It has been said that "God moves in mysterious ways" and I have found in my experience that this is true. I have seen it more clearly recently... About this time last year, I was coming out of the ministry, something that I did not foresee or really even desire, and I found myself asking God what in the world He was doing (and honestly telling Him that I didn't really like whatever it was that He was doing!). For the first time in my Christian life I found myself embittered, confused and unsure as to the calling for my life. I was discouraged and dismayed, as something I felt so confident of was proving quite unstable. It was a time of real soul searching. And in the middle of all this I had to hustle. I had to provide for my family. I had to make sure that we were ok. All the while, I was mad I was having to do it. I felt like God was testing me under the might of His thumb. Perhaps He was. A year later, my perspective has widened tremendously. Working in a career that I didn't really like while my wife worked weekends and our time together was more limited than ever before. Seeing the dog eat dog of the corporate world so prevalent in capitalistic America. Going to midweek now more tired and worn out from the grind (yet sad to say, more joyful and happy to be amongst the believers than I had in a long time). I wrestled through experiencing the seemingly pointless and depressing truth that most of the hours of my week were spent in a way that didn't really matter in the ultimate and eternal scope of things. Or so it seemed (for more on this topic, read this article). Yet I realized that my hours at work were some of the prime opportunities for me to meet God, and to try to imitate His Son. So I tried fervently to spend the hours at and away from work to have not only a spiritual and eternal effect on people's souls, but also to bring me closer to God, recognizing my toilsome labor as part of life here this side of eternity … at least, I tried to do these things. Ironically perhaps, it was a co-worker that initially caused me to rethink going back into the ministry. After hearing my story of leaving the ministry his reply was "I thought if God called someone, God called them?", and to this I had no good retort. It was the jolt out of discouragement and bitterness I needed to once again evaluate my heart and my faith of what I am here for. Being out of the ministry, where church was no longer my job, was actually a refreshing change. One that brought back a perspective I fear I had all but lost. A perspective of gratitude, and perspective of longing for heaven, rather than a perspective of ambition and trying to make the wheel turn as I desired. Now, as I prepare to enter back into the ministry vocationally, something I feel passionate about and called into, I enter with a different viewpoint. A different mindset. A different goal. One that is less about accomplishing what I am trying to accomplish in the name of God, and getting others to do their part to that end, and more about loving God in a way that is infectious and inspiring, to meet people where they are at in their faith journey and in some way help them closer to Home. More about letting God accomplish whatever it is that He is trying to accomplish, even when it seems mysterious and I lack understanding … and even, no especially, when it is contrary to what I want.