New Beginnings

There’s something pretty exciting about a new beginning, isn’t there? A new school year, a new job, a new baby—each new venture brings the promise of a fresh start. Each new step into the unknown stirs the blood, gets those butterflies fluttering a bit.

I always love the excitement humming in the air on the first day of our Tuesday Morning Bible studies. Did you hear it? In the chatter . . . in the laughter . . . the greetings of old friends . . .  the meetings of new? Each beginning is alive with so much potential.

But beginnings also bring with them a bit of risk.

I met a new friend on Tuesday morning. She admitted to feeling a few butterflies in the pit of her stomach when she drove into the parking lot and saw all the cars. I could relate, though the butterflies in my stomach felt more like a flock of flamingos. Oh, the cars in the parking lot hadn’t bothered me. I’ve been coming on Tuesday mornings long enough to know that in the midst of the many new faces, I would also find the familiar. But like my new friend, I am taking a risk this year. I’m stepping into a new role. And to be honest, that scares me.

Like many of you, I’ve been challenged by our church’s Decade on Purpose. I want to be open to any opportunity God might have for me. I expected him to open more doors for me in my writing (which he has), but what I didn’t expect was for him to open the teaching door again in my life and begin to nudge me through it. I haven’t taught in a formal setting in over 20 years. I have never taught a group of my peers, and I have certainly never taught the Bible. I thought I already was serving God in the Tuesday Morning ministry where I was most gifted—back behind the scenes where I was comfortable. But that’s just the point. I was too comfortable.

Serving God shouldn’t be about what I can do for him in my own strength, but what he can do through me.

II Corinthians 12:9 tells us “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” If I don’t take the risk—step out in my own weakness and inadequacy, how will I ever know his power? How will I ever learn to walk by faith? To be honest, there were many moments last Tuesday morning when I was tempted to head back into my own comfortable corner, pushing buttons on the sound board or taking attendance in the classroom, but if I had, I would have missed out on the incredible excitement of stepping out in faith and watching God show up.

How about you? Are you taking a risk this semester? Maybe simply coming to a Bible study is a risk in and of itself for you. But if you’ve been a part of Tuesday Mornings for a while now and are feeling comfortable—maybe even a little bored—perhaps it’s time to consider stepping out into a new role—making yourself open to where God can use you. You might be surprised where he leads.

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