I first heard of The Giving Keys during IF: Gathering 2014. It was their inaugural year and there were 10-15 of us gathered in a living room, excited about checking out this new thing.
I have struggled with feeling qualified to hold a position on staff since I started at Grace Chapel in 2008. Even though I know I heard God say – I want you just the way you are and I’m going to ask you to always walk in authenticity. I felt like there were other women who were more qualified, better qualified, just plain qualified.
During the conference, one of the speakers shared from the story of Moses and the burning bush. Do you remember that story? The audacity of Moses to say to God, “You’ve got the wrong guy.” (Exodus 3-4)
Exodus 4:1 “But behold, they will not believe me…”
Exodus 4:10 “But Moses said to the Lord, ‘Oh my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.'”
Exodus 4:13 “But he said, ‘Oh my Lord, please send someone else.'”
Exodus 4:14 “Then the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses…”
God gently said to me while listening to this – Jen, I am done with your excuses and your insecurities. I have called you to this place and I will give you everything you need to get my job done. No, you will not be perfect, but no one is. It is a lie from the deceiver that you need to be a certain person or have certain things to be used by Me.”
Ladies, the scriptures are full of the beautifully messed up, the ineloquent, and the under-qualified. All He asks is a willing and humble heart.
I ordered my first giving key after that to commemorate what I knew God said to me during that conference.
It said, “BELIEVE”.
I needed to believe God when He talked. I needed to stop being audacious and a bit of a punk and stop telling Him that He was wrong.
I needed to believe that God is “I AM WHO I AM”. Exodus 3:14
I needed to believe that He had a plan.
I needed to believe that He plans for me were to prosper me and not to harm me.
I needed to believe that I was one of those beautifully messed up people that He wanted to work through.
I lived with that word around my neck for a year and a half.
There was a moment when the meaning of believe shifted, but that is another story.
The next year, during the IF: Gathering, a gal approached me to talk about something in her past. She was struggling with forgiving herself. We met regularly for several months. After a few months, we were prayer together, asking God to remove the guilt and shame and then declaring that it is now done. We only have to ask for forgiveness once – not over and over. He wants to forgive us and to forgive our shame. That’s why Jesus came and died on the cross. Sometimes we need to be freed up to forgive ourselves (even though can be hard for us to believe that we ARE forgiven).
I gave her my key that day. I knew in my heart that God was telling me “She needs this word more than you do.”
Honestly, I felt a little naked after living with it for such a long time. At the same time though, I felt blessed to be a small part in someone else’s burning bush moment!
I will always remember that journey. I will always remember that sweet, precious woman of God and I will always be reminded to BELIEVE.
Interested in Giving Keys? You can check out their website here
Jen is a pastor at Grace Chapel. She is married to Gary (26 years). Mom to Emma (and Josh), Meg and Kate. She loves people, reading, traveling and finding new adventures. She loves Jesus and walking with people to find the freedom God intended for us!
This is Jen’s newest key: REST