Today I met with the chief executive of a big funder in the UK.
Like you do on a grey-Highland-Wednesday.
It was actually a bit of a surprise.
I knew I had a meeting with the organisation in question, and the meeting had been in my diary for a few weeks. One of my team had taken the initial call inviting me and had just booked it into my diary without too much information. And so, when planning my week and checking for meetings yesterday, I had just read, ‘Meeting with such-and-such – no preparation required’.
I went to work wearing yellow chinos, flip flops and floaty summer top.
(Praise God I wasn’t wearning my casual-office-day-normal jeans-and-brightly-coloured-tshirt-combination).
So, as I walked over to the council buildings after lunch, I was slightly shocked to be greeted by two men in posh-London-suits, and ushered into a formal meeting room.
It took me by surprise.
Now, it wasn’t just me. There were a group of us. From a few different organisations.
And despite my shock at the formality of the occasion, it was good.
It was good to think strategically about the problems experienced by our communities. By young people. By children. By families.
It was good to meet others who had a passion to work together to see positive change.
It was good to put creative ideas forward about what these things could look like, and to be solution focussed, rather than problem focussed.
It was good.
And it always encourages me when funders talk about wanting to invest into real-grassroots-make-a-change-work.
And the thing is, in these kinds of meetings, I switch into ‘mission’ mentality.
I don’t worry about public speaking, or standing up in front of people, or being bold in my proposals, because in the moment, the passion to make a difference in the lives of young people takes over and just overflows from me.
I can’t help it. I don’t intend it.
I just get really excited.
Because above impressing funders, I really love what I do. And for the most part, funders can catch some of that passion and see that too.
And often, as I feel that I’m switching into that mode, I realise that it’s not me, it’s Holy Spirit equipping me for the task and place that He has me, so that I can speak with the words that He gives me and give Him the glory from the meeting.
So today, I left this meeting thankful, but also thoughtful.
Thoughtful about the challenge of being that bold all the time.
Thoughtful about the challenge of keeping Jesus at the centre of all of my conversations.
Thoughtful about His promise to always equip us and give us the words to say.
And thoughtful that just as I don’t care what people think of me, as long as I can see young people remaining at the centre of the work that we do, so I shouldn’t care what people think of me, as long as Jesus gets to shine brightly out of a life surrendered.
I remembered some of the stories from the missionaries I spent the weekend with. These men and women had lost friends, and seen neighbours, and kin killed because of the Gospel. They had risked their lives and the lives of their children to go to preach to a people who would otherwise have never heard the name of Jesus. And they had been faithful, through suffering and trial, and into the joy of the harvest.
And they had given glory to the Lord of the harvest.
So, I’m on a mission.
I have been. I am. I will be. Till the end. Wherever. Whenever. Through whatever.
Whatever I’m wearing. Whether I’m organised, surprising or prepared. Whether I’m preaching a sermon or speaking spontaneously. In every season and situation.
I love that this is the most exciting journey, the most exciting life and the most exciting road to walk.