Final Countdown to Ministry Launch

Another sip of my favorite coffee.  I am excited, pumped, juiced, ready to rock and roll.  Just finished prep work for first session of Crossroads Career ministry at church that starts this morning at 8am.

We are expecting 25 guests.  I printed questionnaires and CPRs for 40.

Oh, what are CPRs?  They are forms for Confidential Prayer Requests.  It’s one of the more powerful tools we have.  It is amazing how revealing people will be when you ask and assure confidentiality.  In combination with answers to questionnaires, we get a clear picture of each guest’s situation – practically, emotionally and spiritually.

And I love the opportunity to pray for each and every person personally before I pass CPRs to the prayer team.

Oh, yeah, speaking of prayer, I need to pray now!

“Dear Father in heaven and my Lord Jesus Christ.  Please make it so everyone You have called comes.  Help us to be prepared in advance, ready to receive each one with open hands, gentle touch and a hearing heart.  I pray all the technology works, but if it doesn’t, that we trust in You to guide us and guard us.  Please help us to help other find jobs, career and Your calling.  And finally, please help me not to mess up. Amen!”

Let me think.  Anything I forgot?  I reviewed PowerPoint slides, checked the web links and make a couple changes.  My laptop is full power, and I have all accessories.  Notepad, workbook, and forms are packed.

OK, time for a nap before I go.  Looking forward to seeing my teaching partners Robert and Jack at 7am for pray and prep time.

6:06am my alarm goes off. 

I am already awake, followed by shower, shave and dress with my favorite shirt, blue blazer and grey slacks.  Recheck all my stuff to go, and remember an important cord.  Stop at Starbucks to fill my cup with talk, dark and handsome coffee.

Right on time to meet Jack and Robert at church.  Everything is on track during setup, until… darn it!

With only 20 minutes to launch, I cannot get the image on my laptop to show on the video screen.  I check all connections many times.  I start hitting function keys, and – oops – my computer starts telling me what is on my computer screen.  Now I got two problems I do not know how to solve.  My emotions jump from fear to frustration.  “Stop,” I say to myself.  “Dear Father in heaven.  I don’t know what I am doing.  Please help me!”

Then I hear Jack in the background yelling down the hall, “Hey Phil, can you come and help Brian with his computer?”  Phil calmly works on my computer and find that the “oops” was mine.  I had plugged the video connection into the wrong hole. It all works great now!  Gosh, I wasted so much energy on being fearful and frustrated.  Why didn’t I pray earlier?

Then I look at the signup list.  Only 13!  I thought it was to be 25.  And I was hoping for maybe 40!  My energy starts draining again.  “Stop,” I say to myself again.

Our teaching team huddles together to pray.  With our arms on each other’s shoulders, we are oblivious to what’s happening around us, and we pray beginning with “Our Father” and finishing with “Amen.”

After meeting, greeting and eating, it’s time to launch.  Jack welcomes our guests, introduces us and outlines the agenda.  “And now to kick us off…”

8:15 am Saturday, October 12, 2013

I stand up, walk to the podium and see 25 guests ready to rock and roll.  “Let me tell you the most important thing first,” I say…

We are God’s masterpieces,
Created in Christ Jesus for good works,
Which God prepared beforehand,
That we walk in them.”
(Ephesians 2:10)

It’s a lesson I need to hear again and again.  I am a masterpiece created for good works, which HE – GOD – prepared in advance.  I just need to walk in them, one step at a time, leaning not on my own understanding, but trusting in Him, and Him alone.

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