Thursday, January 03, 2008

Feeling Called

I almost don't know how to begin this. I suppose I could begin by saying that the entertainment bug hit me when I was four, and played a cow (with lines!) in the church Christmas play, and still remember how it felt to hold that microphone in my hand for the first time. Or I could say that I knew that I knew that I knew that I wanted to be a singer when I turned seventeen, and sang in church for the first time. Sure, I broke out into hives before I stepped onto the stage, but once the music started, I forgot that there was anyone else in the building and I could hear myself singing, but couldn't feel my lips moving--something that still happens to me today. Of all the things I don't know about God, or what he wants, I know this--he called me to sing.

For the longest part of my childhood, I never felt at home anywhere. Being an adopted child, there always was, for me, a feeling of not quite being part of the family. I certainly didn't fit in at school, where I was poor, and chubby, and love to read. In high school, I tried my hand at fitting in, and was marginally successful, and was accepted (to a point) as the girl who could make you laugh AND proof your English term paper. But when I stepped onto that stage in church, I knew where I belonged. The stage felt like home. The microphone felt like an old friend. Which, given my debut at age four, it was, if you think about it.

As an adult, it has become increasing clear that I am never going to be a professional singer. I've had to accept that though it may have been my wish for my life, it was just not God's will. Honestly, I've struggled heavily with it, even to a point of questioning God, asking Him if he really called me to sing. Then I remembered Spring 1997, when I stepped onto stage to sing. I had this overwhelming, it was more than a feeling...I can't even describe it. I just suddenly knew that God was calling me into music ministry.

God every so gently reminded me of that this summer, when Lil emailed me, asking me if I wanted to direct the Children's Choir. I was tentative, because I have a tendency toward burning out when it comes to kids, but I knew God was telling me that this would be different. I always loved helping Jan with the Kids for the King choir, and looking back, God was obviously preparing me for this time in my life. We began preparing for the Christmas musical, and I will admit that it was very slow going at first. We spent one whole month of Wednesdays working on one song, because there were more of them than there was of me. Thankfully, Leslie came along, who I feel is called to the same ministry. She helps immensely.

But the funny thing was, no matter how rowdy they got, I couldn't wait for the next class. I found myself actually preparing for upcoming classes; preparing for the spring musical when I wasn't even done with the Christmas musical. It occurred to me one night, as I walking to my car across the parking lot, God did have a plan for me after all. He hadn't forgotten me, and had called me to something bigger than myself--helping children learn to worship and lead worship through song and drama.

It was the most welcome kick in the pants God ever gave me.


stacy o. said...

I certainly know how you feel about high school. All I can say is I am glad it was a long time ago, but I really like you and I enjoyed working on the paper with you. Keep blogging! I have enjoyed it since Kenyetta Hannah sent a link out in the AHS newsletter.

Stacy Rowell Owings
AHS Class of 1995

stacy o. said...

Yep, I spelled your name wrong. Sorry Josie!

josiegirl77 said...

It's OK about the name. As long as it wasn't Jose. That one, I kind of get upset about. Otherwise, it's cool.

Anyway, it's good to hear from you, and knowing that you enjoy reading the blog. It's nice to have an outlet.

And thanks for saying you enjoyed working on the paper with me. I always thought I was kind of a tyrant. It's so strange how skewed your worldview is in high school. You go to school with the same people for thirteen years, and yet you end up not really knowing anyone, not even yourself.