I belong to a church where we are asked to serve in different positions. There is not a paid clergy, so every one in a congregation is expected to serve in some capacity. For a long time, my calling (that’s the term for it) was to teach a class once a month to the women in the ward (our term for parish or congregation). I think I’ve done it four different times in four different wards since I turned 18 and became part of the women’s organization known as the Relief Society. It has been my calling in this ward since I joined it, so almost eight months. I love it because I feel like I do a good job and I get a lot out of it, as well. It’s a balance between what I am able to give and what I receive.
Well, on Sunday, I got a phone call from our ward executive secretary (the bishop’s assistant) asking me if I could be at church about 20 minutes early to meet with a member or the bishopric. Never a fun call to get because it almost always means a new responsibility. My mind started going through the possibilities as I hurried to expedite my prepping process (cutting a girl off 20 minutes early when she has already planned and accounted for said 20 minutes is just cruel). I knew that I would be called as the Relief Society president because, generally, those callings are extended by a bishop directly and that was a relief. I thought maybe a Sunday School teacher, which would have been fine. But that’s where the contemplating ended.
As I met with one of the members of the bishopric, he told me that I would be getting a new calling (shocking), and then he said, “Well, it will kind of be in addition to what you are already doing.” There was hope. Hope that I would just receive an additional calling…but, no. The reason that Brother Brockbank told me that I would be doing something in addition to my current calling is because, when you are a member of the Relief Society presidency, you are able to teach once every three months. Whoopee. He asked if I would be willing to be a member of that presidency as the second counselor over Home, Family and Personal Enrichment. First of all, I don’t even attend Enricment activities half the time. Second, if I accepted, I would have to plan, prepare, delegate and make phone calls. I have to get to know all of the women and make sure they are all doing okay. I have to attend presidency meetings every Sunday and another meeting every other Sunday. As a teacher, I only had to prepare, no meetings, no phone calls, no delegating. It was perfect.
I have learned throughout my life and the many callings I’ve had that accepting a calling is always the best idea, even if you aren’t super excited about it at first. The hardest thing, this time, was the realization that I was praying for this change. Maybe not directly, but nonetheless, I was praying for it. I have recently realized that I am not the same kind, loving, compassionate person I once was and that I am not very good at delegating (without micromanaging) and I have been praying to improve in those areas. I should know better than to pray for something like that, because God answers prayers.