BY SARAH WELLENBROCK
I love my church. Resonate has been one of the few churches I have been to that is clearly focused on the mission. We reach the hearts of college students, who have their hearts transformed by the gospel, and then send them out to other cities to impact the lives of other college students.
I got plugged into Resonate during my senior year of college. I remember the day I first met the team. I picked them up at Eagle Point apartments and had them jump in the car as we searched for housing. I had them laughing as I shared random stories from my childhood. A few short weeks later they had their spring launch here in Cheney. I was hooked.
By the first week of Resonate’s big launch in September, I was already serving as part of the connections team and a few short months later I was leading the team. Come February, I was asked to attend a winter retreat to come and see the vision for what it would be like to be on staff with Resonate. I was so honored because I had always wanted to work for a church; I jumped at the opportunity to attend. I had such a wonderful time getting to know all of the staff and hear about what God was doing through Resonate. By June I had officially accepted my role as a Missionary for Eastern Washington’s campus.
I loved being a missionary. As an extroverted person, it was like a dream come true to be able to have a job where my role was to meet new people and bring them into community. But as we got farther into the school year, I started to feel an immense pressure to be “good at my job”. I constantly felt like I was letting people down around me, which ultimately left me feeling like I was failing at my job and, in return, failing God. I would always ask God the questions, “Why am I here? What is my purpose?” It felt like if I left staff then God could no longer use me. But that is so far from the truth. God knows me and He knows my gifts, my struggles, and my insecurities. He wants to use those for His good and to help others who struggle similarly to me.
I began realizing that during this particular time in my life, Resonate staff may not be the right fit. That’s when the lies would come flooding in. I was left feeling confused about what God had planned for my future. What if I couldn’t find a job in my field? How would I support myself?
I remember one day being jealous of my working friends. It wasn’t that they had money they could spend on whatever they wanted, but the fact that they had the ability to give their money to the mission. I, as well as some of our other staff members, were struggling with support and my only reaction was that I wanted to work full time so that I could help support them. I loved the students on campus, but it came down to the fact that everything I was doing felt like I could do it while also working full time. This led me to taking a step of faith and stepping down from my position and searching for a new job.
It was hard to leave what I think was one of the best jobs ever, but what I am finding out now, is that maybe the “best job ever” is just not meant for me in the same context as I originally thought. What this transition has taught me is that I still get to be part of the “best job ever” it just looks a little different. I still get to disciple young leaders and help guide them in their walks with Jesus. I still get to sit around tables and share dinner and conversation with non-believers. I still get to be part of the “best job ever” by giving and faithfully serving and that is just as important as being a missionary. God calls us to be unified as a body, and I am learning that although my role looks a little different, I am just as valuable to the mission as I was before.
I took a step of faith and the Lord led me to accepting a full time position at The Inlander, an urban newspaper in the heart of Spokane.
Like I said before, God is teaching me that He can use me wherever I am. I don’t have to be on staff to be used by Him, I can be working as an assistant and be just as effective. Maybe the people are different, but the conversations are still the same. I am learning that the role of a missionary is not just for a staff member, but that everyone should encompass this role because Jesus tells us to “therefore go and make disciples” not “therefore if you work for a church go and make disciples.” Our role as believers is to step out of our comfort zones and step into faith, trusting that God will be guiding the conversations we have with our co-workers, our family, and our non-believing friends.
Regardless of where you fit or what you think your role is in the mission, God wants to use you; as a barista, a student, an engineer, an assistant, anything for His greater glory. I encourage you to humbly and honestly ask God where you fit even if He asks you to go where you don’t feel comfortable or follow Him when He asks you to give up something you thought you always wanted. His way is always better and we have to be willing to submit even when it is hard. I am so thankful for Resonate and the story we get to be a part of.
If you connected with this story and want to speak with someone about it, email firstname.lastname@example.org.