In the midst of the busy that is life, packing, preparing…getting ready to move…all that jazz. I have to take a moment and talk about this day and what it represents.
Today marks a special day for me. We all have those days that we know we will never forget. Well, it was 9yrs ago today and I didn’t forget. It was a night for me that life took a little turn. I had said as a teenager that I was not called to youth ministry in any way, shape or form…I was wrong. Today marks 9 years of youth ministry for me. What an incredible journey! What an honor to have been a part of the lives of such amazing teenagers. My heart is full 🙂
9yrs ago marks the first time Ray and I ever led worship together. We still do and I love it!
9yrs ago marks the day that we met dear friends Jaycee and Anna Jennings. They were youth pastors and we were a guest worship team. Grateful for their friendship and their wisdom. Who knew walking into that building that night that God would put such amazing people in our lives.
9yrs ago marks the day that God did something in and through me that had never happened before. It started something in me that I will never forget and threw me forward. I was speechless…that is saying a lot.
It is never healthy to live in the past. It is wonderful however, to look back, see what God has done and have it serve as a great reminder of His purposes as we walk forward.
So today is a 9 yr anniversary of sorts.
It is probably no surprise that this season in my life is not a comfortable one. There haven’t been very many times in my life where I have been all that comfortable. While I have been content, comfortable has never consumed my life. These last few years have been full…very very full! I wouldn’t change any of it for anything or for any comfort.
I go way back to when I was a teenager and praying things like “God, I don’t want to live a normal life”. Never giving thought to what my “normal” would be but I prayed the prayer and I meant it…whatever it may look like.
Fast forward to 2006, living in Austin and uncomfortable, knowing that God was about to do something, just wasn’t sure what it was. I did not expect what came. We were in a church we loved (looking at you Celebration), I had a job that I loved, surrounded by amazing friends and family. Oh…and they had just built and HEB Plus. Other than what was stirring in us, life was peachy! Then my husband made “the call”. He called our dear friend and mentor Pastor Jaycee and told him we felt lead to be youth pastors (after years of being youth leaders). Pastor J said words that radiate in my ears “are you ready to lay down Austin”. In all honesty, NO! But we did. The next day he called and said he got a call from a church in Tonkawa, OK. They were looking for a youth pastor and said to call them. Ray called, we visited, we moved. It was hard to say the least but it brings me to point of today’s blog. I had never been so uncomfortable in my life.
It was when I was in that place of discomfort that God stretched me in ways I could have never imagined. I’ve said before that being in OK, my heart grew. It grew to love a group of students more than they could ever know and more than I thought possible. Still believe with everything in me that they are a group of students who will change the world. It was being in OK that vision for what we look forward to today took root. Outside of everything I thought made sense, God showed me what I would likely never see had I not been uncomfortable.
Just food for thought…
If you have read my husband’s blog (http://rayjortiz.com/ ), you probably assume there is a lot on my heart and mind. There are a lot of emotions, excitement and a smattering of nerves.
So the word is out! We are moving back to Austin at the end of the month and planting a church at the end of the summer! While there are many thoughts that go through my head right now, I am working on writing about one or so at a time. It’s a part of me learning to be more succinct. I am female and this does not come naturally. Right now, I’m a bit in awe. This all started with our late-night pillow talk…about planting churches. If you didn’t think I was strange before, you do now. I’m ok with that. It went from talking to something we prayed about…for years. Then something we seriously prayed about, then the Lord started to give vision and at that moment, no timeline. We were serving in other ministries with this vision developing inside of us. And I do mean “us”. This stirs in my heart as much as my husbands. Then there came a day where we knew that this was no longer a “someday” without a timeline. The more we continued to pray and dream, more vision came.
I am in awe of many things right now. This past week was the fullest and most emotionally exhausting week that I’ve had in a long time. We are blessed. We are blessed with dear friends and a church family whose support and encouragement is incredible.
There will be a lot more details to come!