Do you ever feel like there is something stopping you from having those beautiful feet who bring the good news of Jesus?
For me, it is fear – and it mostly shows up in my communication. God created me to be a communicator (He created all of us to be communicators!), but somewhere along the line, fear plugged up my communication. I began to worry about what other people thought of me. I made comparisons with others and judged my communication against theirs. I questioned my own ability to communicate clearly, or relevantly and whether anyone cared to hear my voice. Maybe you have experienced something similar.
For me, these fears made me a hesitant communicator – and boxed me into a place where I felt that I could not possibly fulfill what God had called me to be… a person with beautiful feet – one who brings good news!
God has given the incredible gift of this season – 3 months – to find victory in some of those fears that hinder my communication of Christ. Right now I’m in Harpenden, England – living at a beautiful YWAM base that sits in a charming little English town about an hour north of London. I’m here to complete 3 months of training in Communication Foundations. Primarily, this means that I am here to learn and practice how to communicate more like Christ and more freely about Christ. Personally, God has spoken that this is a season of overcoming and finding victory over communication fears and insecurities that have, in the past, kept me from living in the fullness of what God has planned for my life.
Ironically, I can’t communicate as well as I’d like how valuable this time is going to be. It’s such a unique and needed learning opportunity – and how the resources and details have fallen into place for me to be here has clearly been orchestrated by God. I’m so often reminded in this season of His abundant goodness that goes beyond what I deserve.
This school is made up of 15 students and 3 staff members. Within the 18 of us, there are 13 nations represented from every continent except Antartica. This alone is extraordinary. I have never been a part of such a beautifully multi-cultural group. I’m learning so much about how to communicate and build relationships with people with vastly different perspectives, world views and communication styles than my own. Within that, I’m struck constantly by how precious these people are and how purposefully God has made the nations, and how right it is for us all to be working together in unity.
So far, I’ve felt stretched and challenged almost every single day. Whether it be in building relationships, pushing myself out of my comfort zone in sharing, or pushing my commitment to excellence in my preparation and studying – I am eager to be engaged in this season as much as possible. Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to share a story that I wrote about my Grandfather in front of an audience of around 50 people. Two days later, I was invited to teach our class on one of my favorite topics – Active Listening. This is something I’ve learned a lot about in the past year and was honored to be able to share with my classmates. It went so well, and I received so much useful feedback on the teaching time. Then, this week I gave two public speaking presentations topics I learned about for the first time. In all of these public speaking opportunities, I learned a great deal about communication and how God works within communication, as well as how to identify and confront personal fears in my own communication. So challenging, but SO good!
Through all of this, I’m feeling an urgently to draw into intimacy with God. Jesus is our ultimate example of communication and He drew everything from his relationship with God the Father. I have such a desire for the same – and I believe this is a season for building that relationship with God that will allow me to press through the challenges of the next season, new leadership roles that I’ll be taking on, and the pioneering process of the mission field in general.