After a quick reprieve at the lake I’m back at Middletown and preaching this weekend! I’ll be bringing another message in our series “Things Jesus Never Said.” Jesus never said, “Come Follow Me When You Get Your Act Together.” He simply said, “Come Follow Me…” and WE are the ones who usually fill in the blank with reasons we can’t, make our own excuses, or develop our own timeline.
When Jesus called Simon (Peter) and Andrew out of the boat – two fishermen trying to make a living, they dropped their nets and just came. They didn’t ask a lot of questions and definitely didn’t get their affairs in order first.
I encourage you to read their story in Mark 1:14-20 and reflect on whether you’ve ever had one of those “Follow Me” moments in your own life. Maybe a prompting or a whisper from God that you leaned into. Something you said “Yes” to that didn’t make sense at the time.
I received a message from a dear friend this week, who shared her own “Follow Me” moment. Becky grew up in this church, was an active youth sponsor a few years ago, and still attends here with her mother, Henrietta Barker, when she’s in town! Her story inspired me, and you’ll want to hear it, too.
Several years ago, I found out that I was not going to be able to return to my job and was put on disability because of my memory deficit after another brain surgery. I really didn’t know what to do with myself. I had to support myself. I had disability insurance, but I did not feel disabled, even though I knew I was not going to be able to go back to work at a job I loved. I really did not know if I would ever be able to work as a nurse again.
But God was right there with me. He let me know I just needed to follow the path he laid out in front of me. Not to worry, but just move forward in faith, one step at a time. That summer I went on mission trip with the youth, able to go only because I did not have a job. It was an amazing, eye-opening trip for me. I learned so much about people and about my faith. I just kept moving forward onto the next stepping stone in the path. God kept me busy all summer that year, taking care of people and doing things for my family, friends and church that I would not have been able to do if I was working.
Early October, I got a call from my brother who offered me a new job down in Bowling Green. His company needed a nurse and said my memory deficits would not interfere with my ability to do the job. Taking a deep breath, I went to live at my brother’s house and tried my hand at a whole new kind of nursing. I have been there almost 6 years now and it is just the right fit for me. I have grown to love living in Bowling Green and appreciate that I am still so close to my parents and other family members. God had a church for me and plenty of church work for me to do in my new home. In addition he provided a house to live in, friends and a life that I was not sure I would ever have again. It all worked out according to his will. And all I had to do was to follow the path that he put out before me. One step at a time.
Becky’s story is a beautiful example of what happens when we say yes and lean into God’s plans, and it leads to something more beautiful than what we can imagine.
See you in worship!
P.S.-Have you registered yet for the Global Leadership Summit here at Middletown – August 9th and 10th? We just surpassed 200 registrations and expect that number to grow! This year’s speaker lineup is amazing, and our team is excited. Don’t miss out – click here to register today.