Why You Should Do What You Love (At Least Some of the Time)
I was raised in a very loving church. Tiny yes, but loving. The men and women there encouraged me, taught me, and loved me as a church family should. I had no idea how ideal it was until only recently.
Jean was a formal but motherly figure. She carried herself with humble dignity and always treated everyone with sincere respect. Even little girls like me. A teacher by trade, from time to time she taught my Sunday school class. She was also very involved in our church body. Among other things she would occasionally read the Scripture readings during our church service. Her delivery was powerful. Her love for written word was clear. She treasured words and the strength that came with them. She knew how to enunciate, pause at the right places, and vocalize the Scripture so it made sense to the listener.
There is no doubt she inspired me. What could be better, than to read Scripture aloud so it spoke to a hurting heart, an open wound, or a frustrating circumstance? What could be better than to make Scripture accessible to the people for whom the Word came?
I didn’t realize it then, but as I grew and I watched her share effective words at mother-daughter banquets, church dinners, and during the service.. I yearned to play that role.
Jean died this past fall. Her battle with Alzheimer’s ended in October. Her health had been declining for some time. The last time I saw her was the annual mother-daughter banquet… where I was privileged to share a message of how Jesus takes our messy lives and makes us useful and holy. How He uses us right where we are.
I doubt Jean knew how powerful an influence she had on me. It wasn’t until she died that I really processed all of it. Reflecting on her role in my life has given me a fresh appreciation for the spoken Word. Sorting through all of this, I can see now that God has been preparing me – for a long time – to do what I am doing now. Jean is still inspiring me. She is still teaching me how useful we can be to others when we do what we love.