Sunday, February 17, 2008

Why I Did What I Did

As a child, I was confident, determined and rather intense. I was the child who really believed I could do anything I wanted to do. When I was 12, I decided that I would become a doctor by the time I graduated high school. I went to the library and checked out a stack of medical books. I studied the charts and the terms and the location of organs I had never heard of. I was to be the first self-studied, teen physician. In Junior High, I met with the principal to introduce my plan for helping the poor in our school. There were two girls that needed clothes and food and it was imperative that we do something to affect their future. At 14, I was sure I was headed to USC to change the face of Hollywood. I had won a trip to the Star City and got to meet a bunch of directors, actors and university faculty. I told them all to look for me in 4 years. At 17, my dream was to be the first woman Chaplain to the US Senate. I carried Richard Halverson's prayer book with me and recited his governmental prayers.

I went off to Bible college and got my MRS degree in the first year. We got married and lived on a gravel road in Gas City, Kansas pastoring a youth group of 5 with no future in sight, I wondered how on earth I ended up there. On a gravel road of all places?? Wasn't I made to change the world for crying out loud? I vividly remember driving around curve on the main road toward the church, pondering the meaning of my life and I heard a voice on the inside say, "INTERCESSOR". I had heard the word before, and vaguely knew it was related to prayer, but had no idea what it meant. I wouldn't have even a clue for many more years.

As we houseparented at a boys home on the tundra of western North Dakota, we learned more about the leadership and authority of God than ever in our lives. At age 19 and 22, we were parents to 8 fatherless teenage boys. I cooked for them, helped them with homework, washed their underwear, bought their Christmas presents and took them to church. At the time, it seemed so far away from what God had "called" us to be. If only we knew then..........

Youth pastoring 7 more years, planting a church that died, flourishing in mega-church ministry, starting a seedlet house of prayer, joining the prayer movement as an occupation -- and in the midst bringing into the world four of the most brilliant lives ever known to this earth.

I did what I did because of the little voice inside that directed us, sometimes not quite sure we were doing the right thing. But here we are, and I am filled with a fiery confidence that the Lord has led us with precision and we are exactly where we are supposed to be.

So why all those crazy twists and seeming turns? Why have I wondered all these years, "Who am I? Where are the dreams?" It's all part of the journey I suppose. I liken it to being in Breckenridge this summer, up on the mountain that Bob had led us on, wondering where the heck we were going. It seemed like we had taken a wrong turn and it was taking forever to get to the top. Once on the top, I stared down at the beauty of where we had been. I could see the path, the most direct one, steering away from dangerous cliffs, and it had led us to this marvelous place.

I am not at the top yet, but I look down and for the first time in my life, I am realizing the brilliance of God in making me who I am. He actually LIKED me when I was an intense, radical, annoying kid! He knew that's what it would take to get me here -- and to where I am going. He knew that I would be the one who would say "yes" to the crazy, spontaneous stuff. He knew I would fight for the underdog and believe we could win. He knew I would not know the word "impossible". He likes that about me. And I am finding (finally!) that I like that about me too.

I did what I did because He made me who He made me and His leadership is like fine gold over m life. Now and forever. Kansas City or the moon. He really likes me. And I like that!

3 comments:

Lauren said...

When I was 9 I planned on being the first Supreme Court Justice under the age of 30.

Your husband said this is going to be a series. That's true, I hope? It would be wonderful to hear your story in the Lord.

Jessie said...

Kelsey, you have no idea who I am. Haha. That's ok, i hope. the short version -- i'm a blogger/internet addict, vicariously joined to the prayer movement -- read your husband's blog about once a week, and yours when he links to it. I loved your teaching at onething07. I work with youth and young adults. ok, so there's the history....

here's why i write: It seems that God likes to bring into my life young people to disciple who are a lot like you: crazy and determined. I love it. I try to walk the line between "go for it!" and not wanting to see them crash and burn beyond repair. . . I love them, really! But, as more of a "cautious" person (although FULL OF FAITH and wanting to change the world myself :), I could use some advice on how to mentor them well. I don't know if you felt like you had those who mentored you WELL, or who really helped you. but, being a little older, maybe you can look with hindsight and say, "This... would have really helped me." I would LOVE such a piece of advice! My struggle with these guys is trying to translate their zeal into producive things, and keeping them from alienating others in thier (somewhat quirky) passion -- without throwing water on their fire, or trying to make them conform/be lukewarm/etc.
Does all that make sense?
Sorry to put this all on your blog, but if you wanted to email me, that would be GREAT: spiritofchrist_fellowship@yahoo.com. you can also check my blog, which should be linked on this post.
-Jessie

The Banderman Family said...

I followed the link here from your husband's blog -- which I had found recently by following the link from another blog! LOL But, as I read your post, my eyes filled with tears -- we are new to the KC area and it blesses my heart so much when I have the privilege of 'seeing' someone else's life and hearing of God's love and His faithful leadership. It strengthens my heart for the season we're in. Thank you for sharing.

Debi