"We just don't have enough people, it looks like we're going to need to take turns volunteering." Wincing at her words, I put the dish towel down and picked up another dirty plate.
"Well, I'll be honest, it's not my favorite thing to do, but if we need to..." I finished washing the dish and rinsed it.
"Thanks, Rosalyn. Hopefully we'll get this worked out."
Our call ended and I looked down at the sink full of dishes. "Why?" I grumbled to God. "Of all the jobs I love to do, why do I have to do the one I just really struggle with?" Getting no answer, I finished the dinner dishes, still growling.
Later that night, I looked ahead on the calendar and sighed. Twice in one week! What was God trying to tell me? I sat on the couch and turned to Tom. "So, here's the deal. I need to help with childcare at MoPS, and we have nursery this week at church. Why is this so hard for me?"
Tom looked over at me, brow creased. "I just don't know why you hate it so much. I love watching the kids, they're great. And I don't know what God is trying to tell you. Maybe you should ask him."
That night, I prayed as I was heading to bed. Opening my bible, I said, "Lord, I really need to hear from you. What am I not getting here? Why am I so frustrated and angry at being asked to do such a simple job?"
My bible fell open and I looked at the page. The verses seemed to jump off of the page:
"If all you want is your own way, flirting with the world every chance you get, you end up enemies of God and his way. And do you suppose God doesn't care? The proverb has it that "he's a fiercely jealous lover." And what he gives in love is far better than anything else you'll find. It's common knowledge that "God goes against the willful proud; God gives grace to the willing humble." (Proverbs 3:34)
So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he'll be there in no time." (James 4:4a-8a MSG
And I knew. God asking me to care for the children was not his way of punishing me, or disciplining me. He was training me. It may be a job that I don't enjoy, but it wasn't about the job - it was about my heart. I had lost my way, looking with my eyes. I needed to refocus myself, not on the job, but on my heart. Was I so proud that I chose to reject a simple (yet important) job that didn't appeal to me?
Would I choose to be willing, to allow God to humble me? Would I respond to the gentle reminder that insisting on my own way pulled me further and further from him?
And so I prayed, asking for him to give me a humble, willing heart. And I still do. Because sometimes, it's not about the job he's asking us to do - it's about our attitude, our heart-thoughts, our willful pride versus our humble willingness.
Do you have a job that you've been asked to do and you're struggling with having a good attitude?
Let's work through it together - how do you get past yourself to the person God wants you to become?
"We want to live well, but our foremost efforts should be to help others live well."
(1 Corinthians 10:24b MSG)