Yesterday I did something I have never really done. I moved dirt for my husband. He was working to cave in a hole he had been digging to make it safer for him to dig farther back. I am not a manual labor kind of girl, but I enjoyed it for a while. My tools were a small shovel, and I used a pick ax a few times.
It sounds silly I know; as I was doing it, I felt a connection to my father who always operated heavy machinery and moved dirt for a living. My husband commented on my work, and I told him I am my father’s daughter. It wasn’t a lot of work, I might have filled 2 1/2 buckets of classified dirt, but I was proud of my little spot.
I asked God to show me something through the process. I never want to waste an experience. He didn’t fail. I realize I didn’t mind the work in the moment or getting dusty,. I was excited about accomplishing what I set out to do. I was happy to work alongside my husband and help him with his goal. Usually I work in the middle step, I will run his dirt through the sluice. He does the hard work, and then he pans the concentrate to pull out the fine gold.
I like the middle job, it takes less effort. I can sit comfortably (most of the time), soak in the sun, and feel like a I am accomplishing things as a I empty bucket after bucket. I don’t have to put forth the sweat and energy it takes to dig big shovels of dirt. I don’t have to do the tedious work of separating the gold from the concentrate.
I realize that in my Christian walk, I also like to operate in the middle. I often come up with some ideas that I think would be great. However, breaking ground and putting in the effort that it takes to get going, I am not always willing to put in the work. The perfectionist part of my personality doesn’t let me get started, because I don’t see all the steps I need to take.
I also realize the tedious parts of the Kingdom, I often become inpatient with. I need the goal to be reached, and often in Kingdom work, there is not something to reach, as the work will not be complete until the Lord returns. There is no task for my type A personality to complete, so I get discouraged in the process.
In the middle, I enjoy things. I can fulfill a task for someone, whether it is teaching a lesson, serving a meal, meeting a need, or cleaning up, I can see the beginning and the end. I can work in my comfort areas, or know that the uncomfortableness will eventually end. I can give myself kudos that I am doing something for the Kingdom.
There is something though I realized in the process; God has given me the ability to work outside my comfort zone. He gives me ideas for a reason. If I would just be willing to start He will meet me there, He will empower me to complete what He calls me too. He wants me to jump in and start doing what He has placed on my heart, not just wait for it to come to me so I can jump in the middle.
I admit, it’s a little overwhelming if I think about it. I have been someone who can convince someone else to start things so I can jump in the middle most of my life. It is easy to stay in the familiar. It’s safer. Yet, I feel like it’s time to quit playing it safe.
This morning the pastor touched on Esther 4:14:
“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?””
That “such a time as this” is an appointed time, a Kingdom assignment. It is not, “make time for this”; it is “for this time you were made”. I won’t say God can’t bring the opportunity back, He can do anything. But it is an opportunity for the moment you are in, and it may not come again. I know I have probably missed some of those, I have repented and asked God to redeem the time and let His grace cover those impacted by my failure.
I don’t want to miss anymore appointed times. It is time to get out of the middle of the process and start doing what God has called me to.