April 11, 2018

Ephesians 3:20

Megan Seidel

My story is one of restoration. We are all being restored; we are all not quite there yet. One of my favorite verses is Philippians 1:6. "And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ."

I accepted Christ at a Christian Sports Camp in 7th grade and followed Him for many years...and then went wayward for many more after that. I have a past that is marked by dark sin and ugliness, but the part of my story I want to share is that of my restoration and how I have learned the huge difference between the words “for” and “with.”

After I recommitted my life to the Lord, for many years I felt as though I had something to prove. I worked hard for the Lord as if to try and make up for all the years I had let Him down. I know the Word and I know of our Savior's love and forgiveness, but I wasn't really living as if I did. I filled my schedule with wonderful God-honoring activities: leading programs at my former church, involvement in in-depth Bible study, hosting Bible studies in my home, Christian conferences, etc. I was no longer employed and was a stay-at-home mom, raising my children and working hard FOR the Lord.

About 3.5 years ago, we started attending First Baptist and got involved with a great Bible Study class. Shortly after, I felt the Holy Spirit's urging to go on the New York Mission Trip with the church. A small group of incredible people from this church went to New York and I think this is where the Lord made it crystal clear to me that He didn't want me to work FOR Him, He wanted me to work WITH Him. On that trip, the Lord revealed to me that He didn't need my good works, or my guilt, or my "look what I did." He needed me to fully rely on Him and Him alone. That trip is the first time I felt my sins had truly been made white as snow. To work FOR Him is pride-driven and does not tap into the undeniable power the Holy Spirit can bring when we “let go and let God.” I am learning that it is not about what I can do for God, but what He can do through me. It is such a beautiful, freeing thing knowing if we let HIM work in us, amazing things will come and take the pressure off of our human selves. It allows us to love and serve from a totally humble and beautiful place where He meets us.

In my story, I have learned the Lord is an awesome boss when you are working FOR Him. But when you are working WITH Him, He is also an unbelievable Power, Father, Friend, Colleague, and Confidant.