The Storm Before the Calm

Sufficient Grace Ministries hosted our first big volunteer/informational meeting yesterday morning at SGM headquarters. Prior to the meeting, I went through the usual gamut of spiritual attacks, this time with a specific twist. Usually, I am overwhelmed with anxiety that presents itself in various forms, even affecting bodily functions. I am a whole lotta small, people….a whole lotta small. Sometimes fear grips me in the shower before I have to speak or sing or host an event. The tears mix with the shower droplets, as I cry out to the One who delivers.

Why, why, why did I say yes to this, God. I don’t wanna do it. I don’t wanna do it…more than I ever didn’t want to do anything before. Please help me. I crumble in the face of “not enough” and “what-if”, the accuser standing dark and loud whispering crippling lies in my ear. I will run to the Word for comfort…knowing the only way to fight lies is with the truth. But, oh the thick struggle it is to make my way to the bible. Sometimes I sing praise songs. Sometimes I go out of my ever-lovin’ mind and Mr. Gerken has to speak some reason into my crazy.

God whispers back to me, “Remember when I asked you if you would say yes? You said yes.”

Really, does that count? It was the tiniest yes, years ago. I barely squeaked it out. You said, “I don’t want you to sit it out anymore. I want you to dance. If I ask you to go, will you say yes?” And I choked out a yes. A barely yes. And, I had no idea what you were planning.

And, don’t I always meet you there?

Yes. (whispered small)

I know it. I know the truth. I know He wants me to dance. I know He won’t make me walk into the lion’s den…er…ahem…the stage alone. I know He will meet me there and bring beauty from my mess. I know it. But, in the panic before I get to the place where He swoops in with all-sufficient grace, all mighty and big, I stand quivering and small…wondering.

Are you sure? What if this time He doesn’t come? What if I’m such a mess, He can’t fix it this time? Not really. In truth…I’m too scared to even ask that question. But it’s there, in the recesses of my mind, prompting panic.

Usually, that’s how it goes. But, yesterday was a little different. You see, the grace we get from our loving Father is specifically designed just for us. And, so are the attacks the enemy fashions for us.

The week prior to the meeting, Lynette and I were praying that God would be the one “building the house” of Sufficient Grace Ministries. (Psalm 127) And, we also prayed for unity among those serving.

Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus,  that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. ~ Romans 15:5-6

The enemy hates it when you pray scripture. And, I should’ve seen it coming. You know, every time, we do this song and dance. Every time, the enemy attacks before I go out to speak and I cower and cling to the Lord the best I can. He shows Himself mighty and faithful, and afterwards, I stand in awe of His grace, feeling humbled that I would ever doubt His faithfulness. This time, the attack was specific. Divide and conquer….the enemy’s response to our prayer for unity. About 10 people canceled for various reasons at the last minute. There was nothing that could be done in many of the situations. Legitimate issues came up for several individuals that hindered them from coming. A few just didn’t come. It was an important meeting, the first time we were gathering all the volunteer groups at once to answer questions. I started to wonder if anyone was coming. Would I be wasting the volunteer group leaders’ time if no one showed up? I felt the weight settle heavy. Overwhelmed and discouraged.

I vented. Prayed. And, scurried to prepare. We had worked hard to ready our conference room all week. Nancy, Lynette, and I…with some help from Jamie the floor buffer and Tim, the floor fixer. Now, we just needed people to fill our empty room.

conference room

And, when I walked into the room to begin the meeting…

group3

Close to 40 beautiful faces with willing hearts staring back at me.

And, He gently whispered….Oh ye of little faith. When will you learn? I will always meet you there.

His answer to my “not enough”.

Plenty.

Sometimes humble pie tastes good, when it’s covered with love and grace.

Then our mouth was filled with laughter,
And our tongue with singing.
Then they said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
 The Lord has done great things for us,
And we are glad.

Psalm 126:2-3

Comments

  1. While reading, chills covered my body, while tears filled my eyes. Yes, it can be most difficult when the prepared project that God has appointed us, seems to weigh down our minds, with thoughts of negative.

    This post was perfect for me today, for the very reasons you and I spoke over the phone about. God uses our lives, to help in many categories of life…

    Love you Kelly!!

    Beautiful… Beautiful post!

  2. Kelly,

    I really needed to read this right now! I have been so down and out of it, thinking absolutely negative, nasty, ugly thoughts, that I know the devil is putting in my mind! I know I must keep my eyes on God & He will guide me and provide for me! Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. This brought tears to my eyes! Beautiful!!! You are such an encouragement and so willing to share your faith and struggles, Thank you.

    Much Love, Hugs and Prayers

  4. It was so wonderful to see so many show up to offer their services and support SGM. God is doing amazing work!

  5. Oh wow. I always forget about spiritual attack, until after something like this happens. I’m so glad you fought through with faith and courage! You and God are writing a beautiful story together,

  6. so great to see all that SGM is growing into, and all from yours being a willing heart! God is so amazing, and the devil will ALWAYS try to steal that joy He brings, that purpose He places in us. so glad to hear you put up a fight.

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