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  • Writer's pictureRenata Joseph

Trying not to Compare

If you follow Seat At The Table on Facebook or read our most recent newsletter, you'll know that we've had an eventful month as a family. We were invited to partner with Belize Camping Experience to provide Team Development training; living with them on their base just outside Belize City. With our kids still not doing in-person school, we felt it was a rare opportunity we shouldn't pass-up. So for the month of May, we packed our bags every weekend and spent the work week at BCE. (Side note: I was able to visit my parents in Florida for 2 weeks, while Eddie and the kids remained at BCE. )

Being temporarily embedded in a ministry team was a valuable and sometimes difficult experience. As we worked on supporting their relationships, roles and communication, we got to see the ins and outs of a successful Belizean ministry. Seeing it up close gave me lots of fodder for self-reflection.

We've been here in Belize for a year and a half, most of which has been during a global pandemic. Our start has been slow and we're still seeking the direction we want to grow in. Next to BCE's flourishing, established ministry, our fledgling ministry feels like a joke. Compared to a ministry base and large fundraising budget, my hands feel empty. They have a team of dedicated full-time missionaries and interns, we're a team of 2 (and a half). I know that we have different callings, I know that we are just getting started, but the feelings of insignificance are real.

1 Peter 4:10-11

Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ.

Another comparison I'm wrestling with is that I'm not a "churchy" person, but the work we're involved with currently is church ministry. The young people are great kids who need great leaders investing in them, but my heart has always been for the rough kids- those who, without intervention, probably won't make it. Those kids and teens are everywhere and I'm praying for an opening for me to get involved.

At the end of this month, it'll be 2 years since I left my career. I'm ready for something new. I'm ready for a project I can sink my teeth into. Rather than feeling defeated, I want my passion to be stoked again.

While I wait for doors to open and direction to become more clear, I will serve faithfully, being true to who I was created to be, using the gifts I have. I will try not to wish I were more like someone else. I will try not to compare. God knows who I am, where I am and where I'm going. His plans are good and He's in charge.

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Jun 15, 2021

Love this Renata! Elton and I were also talking about fishers of men this past week and one thing we know for sure is you also can’t clean the fish until you’ve caught the fish. Too often, besides trying to decide who is worth “fishing”, we can also try to “clean“ them before they are even in the “net”. Of course that’s impossible and truthfully, not our job as ”fishers of men”. I love that you brought up the concept of a wide net that doesn’t pick, choose, and refuse! Thanks for sharing your perspective.

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