About Me

My photo
My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Beginning Ministries III - Addressing Gary's Questions

I have a question about starting ministries. If I recall correctly, you were instrumental in starting the Pine Ridge trips, the Haiti trip, and the Matt 25 proj. Am I correct? Even if I only got one out of three, I'd be interesting in hearing about the process you went through when deciding to begin these ministries.



Close, I did not start the trips to Haiti. I merely went along. I prefer going along to leading as I am really good at doing what I'm told. :)


Did you wrestle with whether it was something coming from God vs. something coming out of your own needs?



Yep! I most definately did wrestle with that in every instance but in the end, I decided that my motives will never be completely pure. I don't think anyone's motives are ever completely pure. All outreach/ministry has some degree of selfishness in it and I believe that no matter how mature we are or how far along in the recovery process we are, our "issues" will always be somewhat of a factor in what we do. I dont' see that as problem big enough to sidetrack me or stop me. It is something to always be aware of and always question and take into consideration, but for me the thing is to do walk on even if I make mistakes. It could be really easy to get bogged down in questioning everything and not do what it is I'm here to do. Will I make mistakes. Absolutely. I do all the time but mistakes are OK. I think God can work with our mistakes.

A second question, for Brian if he's game. Did he wrestle with the same issue regarding writing his books? Any thoughts from either of you on risking when one seems to feel led by God to start something, but is hesitant to step out in faith because of fears, uncertainties, mixed motives, etc.? thanks



Brian isn't here at the moment, but having lived with him I know that with his first book he wrote it basically for himeself. He is the associate pastor at our church and though he loves to preach, rarely gets the opporutnity to do so. He prepares sermons each week regardless in order to "keep in practice" but most of his sermons go upreached. That is a bit discouraging for him and one way he dealt with that was to take snippets (really, really small snippets) of sermons he had prepared and put them together in a devotional book.

The second book was written because he has a unique way of looking at the book of Revelation and wanted to do some teaching on that book but again, has little opportunity to do so. I think he saw this as a tool to be able to allow people to see Revelation differently than they ever have since his focus is on application to daily living.

The last book, is a fictional novel that he began to write as "therapy" for himself after we lost our friend Pam to a boating accident.

He could awnser your questions better so I will ask him when I get the chance and try to post about it when I get the chance. I don't beleive that he ever set out to publish a book. I think it began as something personal for himself and then other doors opened for him.

Now we'll see how close I am after I ask him. :)

I hope I answered your questions ... if not, give it another shot.

2 comments:

Bar Bar A said...

Amber, I love your insight and honesty, this part really stood out to me:
"I decided that my motives will never be completely pure. I don't think anyone's motives are ever completely pure. All outreach/ministry has some degree of selfishness in it and I believe that no matter how mature we are or how far along in the recovery process we are, our "issues" will always be somewhat of a factor in what we do."

I struggled with that on several occasions. One year I went on a Missions Trip to London and had to raise support to go. People teased me about asking for money to take a vacation. I knew that even though I was looking forward to seeing the sites, the work there would be hard (it was!) and important (handing out materials to Muslims).

I can see I have been missing so much by not reading your blog more often, I'm getting my act together starting today!!!

Gary Means said...

Amber,

Thanks again for taking the time to answer my questions. Your answers have been helpful to me as I deal with a battle between seeing a need/feeling a calling and wondering why me?/is there really a need?/am I just being a rebel and malcontent again?

I guess a better way to phrase the question about the need is, 'is there a need for the ministry as I envision it?' I know that there is always a need to reach the world with the message of God's loving desire to be in relationship with us. I also know that there is a need for people to have a place to go that feels safe to be real. So, I guess the real questions are: are those needs already being met in my community, and is God calling me to help develop another venue for His love/His voice in the Auburn valley area? These questions are really, really scary.

It's so easy to dismiss for me to dismiss them. It's easy to feel foolish and arrogant too. And, then there's the desire just to wait and see what happens. Maybe God just wants me to take another year to get to know Him better, to become a little more responsive to His voice. And then I also remember all the other times I thought I was hearing God lead me, and . . . hmmm, part of the time He clearly was. Some of the time I did have a cranial-rectal inversion though. arrgggh. I'm starting to ramble. sorry.