Flexibility is important in my line of work.
When I walk into a church, I never know what to expect. I think the same is true for the church. Most of the time, they do not know me. We both have to trust that God has brought us together and that He is going to work in a powerful way.
I’ve had the best experiences in churches. I love the women that I get to serve. In
the many years of serving the Lord through True Vine ministry, I have only had a couple
of bad experiences. I am so thankful for that.
I have also had my share of funny stories and experiences. I have the type of
personality that attacks awkward moments. It does not help that once I am in an
awkward moment that I make it worse by over analyzing, over explaining, and over
apologizing. I share stories like these with so much love and joy in my heart. We are all
family and in this journey together!
A few years ago, I was invited to speak at an event and the theme was “Whispers
of God’s love in the Garden of Life.” As beautiful as they sound, themes like this make a
speaker tired. Immediately I wonder, “How can I make that theme relevant and biblical
to a woman’s life?” There are so many different angles to approach it from, and
narrowing a focus down is difficult. But they had provided a key verse, which was Psalm
46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” From there, I could plan out my messages.
I arrived at the event and parked my car. I walked into the church and found the
women’s ministry leader. I set up my book table. The ladies arrived and the event began.
I was schedule to speak for thirty minutes on Friday night and two hours on Saturday
morning. The Friday night session served as an introduction for the weekend. I shared
some key thoughts from Psalm 46:10. As I concluded my final thoughts, I felt good
about how I weaved the theme of the event into the Scripture and made application to
the ladies lives. I sat down and breathed a sigh of relief.
The women’s ministry leader came to the stage and said that she had been
thinking about our theme and how different tools that are used in the garden can
represent our tendencies in life. She said that she wanted to play a game that would help
us get to know each other. She shared that she was going to call out a tool that is used in
the garden and that if we felt like that tool represented us, we should stand up.
The first tool that she said was a watering can. She said, “If you are a watering
can, please stand up.“ There was no response. She moved on, “If you are a shovel, please
stand up.” Again, nothing. In that moment, I decided that whatever she said next, I was
standing up. I love women’s ministry leaders and I am not letting one go down on my
With great emphasis, the women’s ministry leader said, “If you are a hoe, please
stand up.” I popped up and looked around. To my surprise, I was the only one standing
up. With great gusto, I looked around at the room and said, “I’ll be the hoe!” And it was
at that moment that I realized what had just happened. Immediately the awkward
explaining and apologizing began. “Oh, I don’t mean it like that. I am not that kind of
girl. I mean, I’m a hoe like I will dig out the truths of Scripture.” The women’s ministry
leader enthusiastically joined in and said to the group, “If you want to be a hoe like
Andrea, please stand up!” It was at that moment that she also realized what had
happened. I sat down in a hurry and thought, “Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”
I share this story because moments like these make life real, rich, and fun. There
was a time when I would have kept a story like this to myself. I would have worried that
it might offend someone or project the wrong image. To be honest, I still worry about
things like that from time to time, but I am making progress.
I am at a place in my life and in my walk with God where I long to simply be real.
I don’t want to act like I have things figured out or that I am super-spiritual and can’t
relate to moments that are silly or awkward. I love life and I love the life God allows me
to live. My family, friends, and ministry mean the world to me. I adore spontaneous
moments that make me laugh until I cry. I laugh at myself all the time. I can get wound
up faster than anyone I know.
Freedom comes when we settle into life and simply live it for the glory of God.
This means, worrying less about what others think and focusing more on the life God
allows us to live. So, my friend, it is your turn. Please share your awkward moment with