Thursday, June 4, 2020

It Only Took Forty-One Years

"You’re already preaching at everyone, your pulpit just looks a lil different from traditional ones."

Oh, friend. This sentence has completely changed how I see things.

My pulpit is different. Often, it is a table at a restaurant like William's or Tim Hortons. Other times, it is a table at Celebrate Recovery.  Lately, my "table" has been a Zoom or FaceTime screen, or a phone call.

And, most often, instead of being the preacher, I am the listener. Interestingly, listening is my favourite thing to do.

I don't preach in the traditional way. I used to, many years ago, but that is not where I am in this season.  Now I preach by begging God to give me the words to say when I am listening to someone across the "table" from me.

Over the years, I have done many different things. I started with two years of Bible College back in the day.  Since then, I have completed a Social Service Worker Diploma, a Paralegal Post Graduate Certificate, and a Graduate Certificate in Biblical Care and Counselling.  I am currently working on a Life Coach Certificate and a Master's in Theological Studies.

I have worked in restaurants and churches, managed a portrait studio, and ran Provincial Offences trials.

Some might say I am a "Jack of all trades and master of none."  While that is true, I am also "equipped with all I need for doing His will." (Hebrews 13:21). 

It has taken me until today to realize who I really am.  I spent years trying different jobs that I thought would satisfy me, but they all came up short. The problem was that I was trying to find my identity in the job, the "success," and the title. Inside, I felt there was more for me because I still felt empty, unsatisfied, and unfulfilled in each job.  As the challenge and novelty wore off, so did the high I was getting from it. Then, I was back to the beginning again, wondering what I should do next to find my next fix. (Ouch! That is a harsh realization of a pattern I did not see before). 

Apparently, it is time to break another addiction.  I did not see that coming.

I would start new projects that always fizzled out, make new email addresses that would signify my "new start," and focus on the things I could do instead of on the person that I am.  I would highlight what I have been through instead of being the person who has been through stuff.  I had forgotten that my past and experiences are not what defines me... God defines me, and I am His daughter.  

So, the question is: With my identity rooted in God and being made in His image, who, then, is Paula Joy Rumbolt?

I am an assistant

The one thing that has been consistent throughout my whole life is my desire to help people in any way I can. 

Help how?  Well, many ways...

~ listen
~ encourage
~ empower
~ practical tasks
~ welcome
~ teach
~ support
~ get into the pit with
~ pray with
~ learn with
~ grow with
~ journey with
~ stay in the background unless stepping into the light would help someone else shine
~ in any other way God leads or is needed

When job titles and degrees fall to the wayside, these are things that I define me. These are at the core of my being. These are my gifts. 

1 Peter 4: 10-11 - "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others..."

Adding to that, my desire is to comfort others in their troubles the same way I was comforted in mine (2 Corinthians 1: 3-5). 

This changes everything. Regardless of my job, title, or success, the truth will always be, I am God's assistant. I help others the way He has helped me.  I use the gifts He has so graciously given me to serve others. It's not about what I DO, it is all about who I AM.

And, that is God's design. 

HI! I am Paula Joy Rumbolt and I am an assistant. 

I have only one primary email address. 

I finally know who I am.

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