This weekend was more than exciting for me and the three choirs who gathered for our annual choir retreat. Special Gathering is a ministry within the mentally challenged community. Our choirs go into churches helping to teach that a person who is developmentally disabled can have a genuine relationship with the Lord.
While we were at Word of Life retreat center, even the drivers and volunteers experienced a blessing from the Lord as they joined in the worship and study. For me, it was especially thrilling. Perhaps it was even life changing.
During this time, I realized something about myself. I’ve loved directing the Special Gathering choirs more than almost anything I do. I even say that the choirs are my hobby because they are too much fun to be work. This Saturday, I realized that not only do I love being a choir director; but God helps me to draw from the choir members things which they may not know they can give. Sure, that is the job of every director but I didn’t actually realize that God was working in this way with me. It came as a bit of a shock.
We often talk about the importance of learning when to say, “No.” But there doesn’t seem to be many rules about when to say, “Yes.” I’ve been asked to consider whether I would be willing to take over all the Special Gathering choirs. It will mean extra work but I’ve been excited about the prospect of doing this. The question has been, should I say, “Yes”? What are the markers that make a right decision easier to make.
I think God taught me how to establish clear markers in decision making during this retreat. Here are some of the things I learned.
1. Do you feel God’s pleasure when you are doing this activity?
2. Are others blessed as much as you are?
3. Can you see spiritual growth in others when you engage in this activity?
4. Can you see spiritual growth in your own life when you engage in this activity?
5. Are you given spiritual insight or revelation from the Lord when you are actively working in this arena?
6. Does God speak to others when you are doing this?
7. Do you sense that others take pleasure in helping you to perform this mission?
8. Are you able to draw others into the circle of influence that this activity produces?
9. Does this activity give you energy or do you feel drained from the effort?
If you can answer “yes” to most or all of these questions, God is probably in a positive decision. Most of us won’t be asked to be choir directors; but all of us will face a decision what will demand an answer. Perhaps these Yes Markers will help us to be able to know God’s will and purpose in our lives.
Is there something that you do that helps you to feel God’s pleasure? Have you included it into your repertoire of activities? If not, why not?