Several years later in ministry, I can reflect on what I have learned over the years. A few of many things that stands out is the fact that I would have never developed into what God had predestined for me IF :
- My Pastor never placed me in an environment to grow
- I did not become passionate about my development, growing in knowledge and understanding
There is a powerful life changing lesson in being placed in environments and the most uncomfortable positions. The most awkward of positions will force us to you use muscles in our bodies that we have never felt before. Trust me, your body will let you know through the aches and pains the following morning after being in an awkward position over a prolonged period of time.
The Apostle Paul knew something about awkward positions. Most of the letters he wrote were from the bowls of imprisonment.
“And because of my chains, most of the brothers and sisters have become confident in the Lord and dare all the more to proclaim the gospel without fear.”Philippians 1:14 NIV
Certainly the Apostle Paul would have traded the prison and life on earth to be with Christ, yet he understood the purpose of why it was necessary to remain in the body awkwardly positioned. Chained in a prison and in his old age enduring the pain and suffering, martyred for the sake of the Lord. This set the tone and established the environment necessary for others to rise up as leaders and press on in the gospel.
“For me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know!”Philippians 1:21-22 NIV
He was not a criminal, yet chained in a prison. He was positioned awkwardly in this season of his life for preaching the truth. He was placed in an environment that produced growth and development. It is arguably possible that the Apostle Paul never realized that because of his awkward position in prison, people around the world for generations would be inspired by the gospel and meet Jesus.
Maximize every opportunity. God has allowed you to be in your current season for your own development and surely for the later development of others. The current storm may seem endless. The current storm may seem infinite and overwhelming, but God is sovereign in his every move. He knows exactly how much pressure is required in order for you to transform into what He wants you to become.
Find what there is to learn, not only from the storm, but from the endurance it produces. Seek the kingdom of God and all its righteousness, press forward and strive to develop.
If your position seems awkward or uncomfortable, it could be the Lord is quickening you into something new.