Entering a Season of Studying

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A Season of Studying

About a week ago I finished my devotional at a Easter sunrise service by publicly referring to myself as a “spaz.” This earned a chuckle or two from the audience, but the truth is God’s definitely created me that way. Please understand I’m using the word spaz not in a disrespectful manner…instead it refers to someone whose “activity-cantered” or must always be doing something [1] and usually has a very short attention span.

Most of the time my activity-centred personality doesn’t create a problem since theres always plenty of work to do. However since coming back to the States for a two-month furlough its created challenges.

Oh don’t get me wrong I’m still working very hard. The difference is my ministry now is focused on studying, reading, writing and developing discipleship material while in St Vincent my ministry focused on teaching and discipleship ministries that involved lots of human interaction.

As a “spaz” I love those island ministries because they bring excitement and energy into my life. Most of all it gives me something encouraging to tangibly evaluate my day with [2]. This reading and lesson plan preparation ministry (or as I call it my season of study) on the other hand isn’t all that fun.

  1. I spend most of the day by myself [3]
  2. Lots of time reading and writing can become pretty boring
  3. And worst of all there aren’t many tangible things to celebrate [4]

Lately my Spastic personality has started to complain

  • Man this is boring!
  • Can’t we go do something fun?
  • Wouldn’t it be more important to volunteer somewhere instead of creating those evangelism lesson plans?
  • Wow you haven’t accomplished anything today…your pathetic.

Now of course I’m not pathetic but as someone whose geared for relationships working from home can be sort of discouraging. Yet when my impatient side speaks up I remind him the seasons of studying are an incredibly important part of ministry.

The thing is it’s almost impossible to go through this season while on the mission field because the problems are too pressing, and its difficult to study Hermeneutics with little kids ringing your bell all day 🙂

While this season of studying is helping me learn many truths about God’s Word one in particular has become precious to me.

Ministry isn’t always fun

It’s tempting to look at the fun parts of ministry [5] and forget that for each one of those there are others not enjoyable at all. Yet its only after we faithfully complete the study seasons of ministry that ministry can be truly effective.

Would I be rather playing football with kids in barrouallie than marking textbooks? Of course! But its the lessons learned in those textbooks that will raise a generation of Godly men and women on the island.

 

[1]: has a very hard time sitting still or relaxing

[2]: I had two Bible clubs today!

[3]: yes this is a good thing, but after coming from a ministry based on interaction it can be a big change

[4]: kind of hard to get fired up about reading twenty-five pages in a theology book

[5]: teaching, discipleship, leadership

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