One of my personal themes for this year comes from Isaiah 22:22:
I will place on his shoulder the key to the house of David; what he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.
Over this weekend, I had the privilege of being invited to lead worship at a conference – my very first “paid gig”. For me, it was a sign that God was opening new doors of ministry opportunities. And the doors that God opens cannot be shut!
I am very grateful for Pastor Teresa Tay’s invitation to lead worship at the Deborah Company “Light Up Your World” Conference 2013 – a conference about empowering men and women to bring transformational light to their spheres of influence. It was a crowd of people that I felt particularly comfortable leading worship amongst – Spirit-filled, intercessory warriors.
We had a team of amazing musicians and singers from Faith Community Church and Influencers City Church on the band.
Pastor Teresa was particularly encouraging, repeatedly telling us that our band was God’s answer to her prayer for the conference.
Aside from the joy of serving the attendees through worship, I was really personally challenged as well, particularly in Pastor Vicki Simpson’s session on “Start Ups”. She shared that 2013 would be a year of personal genesis.
Leonard Ravenhill once said that the opportunity of a lifetime must be seized in the lifetime of the opportunity. To access the opportunity, according to Pastor Vicki, we need both clarity of vision and the courage to pursue. Sometimes, God’s start-up opportunities may come in the most messy of circumstances, such as Jesus’ being born in a manger. But, she said, powerful things will be born in very messy circumstances.
As I reflected on that, I really believe that God has also called me to my own start-up season, particularly in worship ministry. Not everything needs to be neat and lined-up – we just need to press forward in obedience and leave the result to God.
Incidentally, our band graciously felt that serving God was reward enough and wanted to put the honourarium back into the Conference offering. Instead however, the money went to members of our team who were in a phase of start-ups. One of our singers had just started a new business. One of my co-worship leaders that day was starting on a ministry transition. And another of my co-worship leaders was starting a new church plant. So a good portion of the honourarium went back into kingdom start-ups, in the belief that what the Conference organisers had paid the band would in turn be used as seed for the advancing of God’s kingdom in our city.