Walking In God's Sufficient Grace
All things happen in divine order. At least, thinking that helps people keep moving forward. On the evening of March 28, 2019, I preached my licensing sermon. It was bitter sweet because of how much I have been through and how far I have come, knowing my dad never got to hear me preach. But every road would lead up to this moment.
The first time I preached, it was on who God is. My second preaching opportunity was about preparation. Little did I know, I was preparing myself for what was to come. My licensing sermon was about the blessings in accepting your thorns. This acceptance allows God’s sufficient grace to sustain you. I’m not going to preach in this post. These are just some reflections about my experience, as many of my posts tend to do.
I am not a shouter. I do not scream and shout, hoop or holler. I don’t run and jump neither. But I will cry waterfalls and rivers of gratitude, praise, joy and sorrow. And on March 28th after I got home, settled in to my pajamas and read over my license while reflecting on the experience, the floodgates opened. It was during this watershed moment that I realized I made it through the whole thing without breaking down in the middle. I call that growth. There was a time I couldn’t talk about my struggles with heart failure without having shortness of breath or crying too hard to finish my statement. Not only did God’s sufficient grace allow me to share my testimony in front of an audience, but God gave me a peaceful joy in doing so. I knew it was something God wanted me to do and I was honored to oblige. Writing your experience is one thing, sharing it verbally is a whole different vibe.
Having a piece of paper does not give me permission to preach. I have been doing that for years long before I consciously accepted God’s calling on my life. I preach through articles I publish, devotionals I write, essays I post to my blog. I preach every time I exhort someone who is suffering or bearing a load that seems too heavy. Having a license means the leadership of my local church recognizes the calling on one’s life. God gave me all the permission I needed when he gifted me the creativity to write, the heart to exhort through His Word and encourage others to follow His lead.
Interesting enough, I did not write this particular sermon completely. I tried, but the Lord would not allow me to finish. He told me the story continues so let Him give me the words of conclusion.
As I move forward in ministry, I thank God for a family that prays together. I did not invite many people, but my loyal Christ following family and friends were there. My dad is no longer on earth with us but I was blessed to have my mom, brother, cousin, aunt, uncle, bestie and three friends in the audience. These people have all contributed to my testimony and it warmed my heart they were able to share or witness this experience with me.
I encourage anyone reading this to take time to reflect on your path. Accept any thorns in your life that provide an opportunity to exalt Christ’s strength. There is a blessing in doing so and I believe God wants you to have it. Allow God’s sufficient grace to carry you as it continues to sustain me, and keep going. Be blessed.
Love Minister Dena Rodgers