September 7, 2012

How Do We Know Where?

Evette recently wrote with a great question: My husband feels call to plant a church. We are praying about where God is calling us. How did you and your husband absolutely know where God was calling you to plant?

When I speak of our church or our ministry, I find myself using plural pronouns. We moved to Charlottesville. We planted a church. Am I a church planter? In the sense of carrying the load and leading the church, I am not. But in the sense of most everything else--time, effort, concern, and goals--I am. I am not just a church planter's wife; I am a church planting wife.

I say all this simply to reiterate what I've said before: this is a together calling. This is my husband's job and calling, but it's my calling too, because he could not fulfill his calling without my full support, without my being behind him and beside him.
You certainly must be asking,"How is this answering the question?" Because it is vital that, as wives, we know God's call to church plant both for our husbands and for ourselves. I simply cannot say it enough. The where is nowhere close to as important as the certainty of the calling to go.

I've written before about how God led us to Charlottesville, and you can read it here, but God's likely going to lead you to your where in different ways than us. My advice, then, is to wait on Him expectantly through prayer, reading Scripture, and seeking wise counsel.

I'm currently reading about how George Muller, a pastor and missionary who lived in the 1800's, learned to answer the where question:
He learned two lessons:
First, that the safe guide in every crisis is believing prayer in connection with the word of God. 
Secondly, that continued uncertainty as to one's course is a reason for continued waiting.
The flesh is impatient of all delay, both in decision and action; hence all carnal choices are immature and premature, and all carnal courses are mistaken and unspiritual. God is often moved to delay that we may be led to pray, and even the answers to prayer are deferred that the natural and carnal spirit may be kept in check and self-will may bow before the will of God.  
He who would work with God must first wait on Him and wait for Him. 
(George Muller of Bristol and His Witness to a Prayer-Hearing God by Arthur Pierson, 25-26) 

If you cultivate a tender heart toward God and are willing to go, you can't miss His leading.

Church planting wives, how did God answer your where?

By the way, I love questions from readers! Do you have one? Connect with me on TwitterFacebook, by email, or simply leave your question in the comment section.