Maybe you are part of the business world and what I am about to write makes complete sense to you: CFO, CIO, CEO, CTO…
WHAT?! For me, the stay-at-home mom, my introduction to the roles of corporate tiers was based on a pretty basic knowledge gained from movies and a few good books–not from experience!
You see, my husband and I started our small company from our bedroom –he at the desk and me cross-legged on the bed with a laptop. It was truly a humble beginning. In a short time, with much hard work and prayer, our company grew and we found ourselves in Germany, Singapore and France. We were sitting with other distributors from around the world – Brazil, England, China, Indonesia, Australia and more.
Some of the people I would eat dinner with had companies that had a much larger staff, a more generous budget and a client list considerably larger than we had. I couldn’t help but wonder how these prestigious people would laugh if they only knew who I was – a mother of four, turned administrative assistant to my husband, turned co-owner who had to wear many hats – from invoicing, to sales, to sweeping the floor. Who was I to sit in their company and share in their knowledge of industry and security? How could I possibly be qualified?
But do you know what this time with them revealed? They were normal people – with bad hair days, wardrobe mishaps, and embarrassing moments just like me. They were fun to be with, told some good jokes, and had learned some pretty hard earned lessons in life. Did they deserve respect? Yes! But to be placed on a pedestal of prestige? No.
Do you find this to be true of how you perceive others? How often it is that another person’s external circumstance or presence causes us to put them in a place that makes them unreal, even superhuman! Has this perception ever made you feel disqualified for what you have been called?
Do you believe the myth that unless you have lived an “incredible” life, you don’t have anything to offer?
The Apostle Paul understood that our credentials and qualifications for serving one another were not dependent on pedigree, natural gifts or fantastic ability. “ Such confidence we have through Christ toward God. Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God” 2 Corinthians 3:4-5
The truth is that our ability and effectiveness in sharing God’s love with those around us has so little to do with what WE often hold as necessary. I have often belittled myself for my perceived lack of ability when given opportunity to serve, speak of or stand up for what God means to me. Perhaps you too, have walked away from a conversation, or a group study; wishing you had done things differently, asked more perceptive questions, or had spoken more powerfully than you felt you had? In other words, how often have we believed the lie that God’s work was dependent on our effort?
An Intentional Relationship – or purposeful connection – is all about illustrating God’s love to the lives of those whom God has placed in our paths.
God wants to use what He has done in our lives – to give encouragement and hope to others. It isn’t about being the most wise, most experienced, most “together” woman in town. It’s about being authentic and open. This honesty and humility opens wide the gates by which God’s love can flow unhindered. And through the mercy and grace that only He can give, He can use our humble effort to bring light and life to those around us – If only we are willing.
Carla Jones is a wife, mother and creative entrepreneur. She and her family lived for 9 years in South Africa where they owned a business that provided skills development to the underemployed. These days, she spends her time repurposing salvaged items and hopes one day to tie this into a small outreach to others. Since returning to the U.S., she has been involved in building relationships and enjoys being a part of local Bible studies and Women’s Community.
We love our Carla!!