Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Full or Empty?

            Working at Yosemite Sierra Summer Camp has been teaching me an innumerable amount of life lessons! The most recent of these lessons has been learning what it really means to serve: to serve each other, to serve the children that come, to serve yourself, and most importantly, how to serve God. One of the biggest things I'm finding out is how they are all connected. Serving the children that come is what you may think is the main job description when you hear about working at a summer camp, but it's so much more than that! All the other staff members and myself are constantly emptying ourselves out for them. We are serving God by serving these kids, trying our best to be an example of Jesus to them. But we are all learning that as much as we would love to keep pouring out love on them, we can't do that if we are empty. God has been continuously teaching me that I can't do this ministry on my own power, my own energy and my own love; it's not sufficient, it has to be coming from him. We as staff have to put our "oxygen masks" on first.

What does it mean to serve yourself? What is your oxygen mask? How do you get from empty, to full?


Listen to the things God is trying to teach you. Soak it in. What is he saying?

            After coming to my end, after breaking, after running on empty until I about crash, I finally took the time to let God take over. He had some things to remind me, to whisper to me. He reminded me by showing me a series of different verses that I will share with you.

Awake, O sleeper, and rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you. --Eph. 5:14
Kelsey! Do you realize that in order to shine, you have to let ME do it?? 
Let ME fill you up. Let me in. Give me the time, the space, and trust that I can do it. 

"Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ...restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself too, lest you be tempted."--Galatians 6:2
THIS is the power of Christ in me. 

"Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart....If the Lord delights in a man's way, he makes his steps firm; though he stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with his hand."--Psalm 37
Kelsey, it is OKAY to mess up sometimes. You don't always have to say perfect things, just love me. They will see that you love me! 

"Come to me, all who labor, and are heavy laden, and I will give you REST. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."--Matthew 11:28-30
You don't have to do this alone Kelsey. I'm right here, and I want to help you!

"Don't be afraid, I've redeemed you. I've called your name. You're mine. When you're in over your head, I'll be there with you. When you're in rough waters, you will not go down. When you're between a rock and a hard place, it won't be a dead end--because I am God, your personal God. The Holy of Israel, your Savior. I paid a huge price for you: all of Egypt, with rich Cush and Seba thrown in! That's how much you mean to me! That's how much I love you! I'd sell off the whole world to get you back, trade creation just for you. So don't be afraid: I'm with you."--Isaiah 43:1-5
I'm on your side. I always have been. 
Trust that when you're going through a hard time, you can lean on me. Give it to me! 

"So if you find life difficult because you're doing what God said, take it in stride. Trust him. He knows what he's doing, and he'll keep on doing it." --1 Peter 4:19
When you're doing what I tell you to do, it's definitely not always going to be easy...but trust me! 
Trust that I won't ever give you more than you can handle. 
Trust that you're doing the right things. Trust that I know what I'm doing. 
I'm bigger than all your problems, than all your fears. 

"In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith--of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire--may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed."--1 Peter 1:6.
You're doing this for me, Kelsey. Be an example of me...even in the trials. 
You can do this. I know you can. 

"Gods thoughts are not our thoughts. The way that he works surpasses us all."--Isaiah 55:8,9
I am way bigger than you could ever imagine.
I work in ways that you don't understand. 

            God filled me up when I gave him the chance. He taught me things that I have been able to pass along to campers, other staff members and friends. Sometimes we feel like we don't have time for ourselves because we have to use that time to "serve". I would encourage you to remember that in order to be the best example of Jesus, we have to be full of him, overflowing with his love and his presence in our life. So take the time. Find out what your "oxygen mask" is, and put it on first. Take care of yourself so you can take care of others.

1 comment:

  1. Great post Kelsey! Super encouraging and a great reminder too! Keep on keepin' on Lady