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  • Writer's pictureSue Bowles

Many paths, one destination

Sometimes it’s fun – necessary – to take a step back & look where the Lord has taken us and perhaps get a bit of perspective on where He may be leading. This post is inspired by Erik (PushingForward83).

I tell people I’ve had an ‘atypical’ career path….make that ‘life path.’ I went to college & changed my major 4 times…accounting, psychology/youth ministry, communications/education, and finally ‘speech.’ Even then I had to take overload schedules to make it in 4 years ‘cuz back then there was something ‘wrong’ if you didn’t get thru college in 4 years. Ah……..how far we’ve come!

When I graduated I was still confused on what to do. I had a job offer to be an Asst. Mgr. of a Kinney Shoe store & could have started a life in the retail industry, I was Methods & Student Teaching away from having my secondary certificate, which is what I thought I really wanted to do, but I would’ve had to return for one more semester, and then I passed a flier in the residence hall advertising graduate assistantships in Residential Life at a graduate school. I was overinvolved in student activities in college so I did a little research & applied. The week before graduation the phone rang. I was being offered an interview! Then my phone rang again…it was the Student Activities office at the same university offering an interview! Hmmmmmm……..two interviews for graduate assistantships at the same university. What do you think Sherlock? Could God be saying something? The entire interview process is a different story of the Lord clearly leading.

Long and short, I got my Master’s degree in Counseling: College Student Development and worked on college campuses for 8 years. I repented & came to the Lord the summer before my senior year of college so those 8 years working on campuses were challenging as there had not really been discipleship. As I grew I knew I had to get out of that world of compromise & He was drawing me to staff with a ministry. After a long ordeal of raising support I worked at the national office helping coordinate national high school programs. Then an opportunity came to go on staff at my church as the Office Mgr. so I went there. That continued until 2001 when the pastor resigned (church split) and we (about 80 of us) left to start a new church which more accurately reflected Biblical leadership. When that happened I had to find a new job which has led me to the world of Customer Service in the wholesale industry. (as an aside, tomorrow night’s 2 hour Extreme Makeover: Home Edition episode was filmed 20 min. from us and our company had the opportunity to provide the doors…..so I got to help spread that word this week….WATCH THE SHOW! 7PM EST!).

That has been like whiplash at times but I think I’ve grown more in the last 6 years than I have in a long time. My focus is simply to glorify the Lord & make Him look good. I can do that thru my demeanor, my attitude, my work ethic, my speech, lack of gossiping, etc.

During this time I went on a mission trip with our new church. We went to Mexico with To Every Tribe Ministries (www.toeverytribe.com) and my heart got hooked on missions. I still don’t know if the Lord has me as one to ‘go’ into another country, but I do know I desire to support TETM with every chance I can. For now that means going on trips, helping collect items for their holiday give-a-ways to help them build relationships with the villagers, encouraging the missionary family we just sent to TETM’s Center for Pioneer Church Planting (CPCP) school, and the list goes on. And in the meantime He’s called me to be faithful to Him at work (and He’s blessing w/more corporate responsibilities the last several months – to do stuff with marketing). And I need to be faithful in helping take care of my family. My brother & Mom live with me so my focus needs to be in loving them well and being faithful in that.

There hasn’t been much ‘glorious’ work in my life…nothing to make me ‘stand out’ in the crowd or shout from the rooftops that ‘hey, I”m working for God.’ But that’s the way it’s supposed to be. Jesus just went about whatever task the Father had given Him at that point in time, did it well, boldly, and with love, and moved on. When He was starting to be ‘discovered’ by the crowd He often slipped away.

So what’s my passion? Living for the Lord right where He has me, doing well whatever He has given me to do, and prayerfully honoring & glorifying Him in the process.

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