My "Sending Story" - A Guest Post from Jami Stroud.

I am stubborn. I have never really like being told what to do. I like to decide for myself whether or not I am going to do something. I cannot count the amount of times that I have felt God calling me toward something only to wait until I decided that it was somethingI wanted to do or throw up my hands and say, “Fine! I’ll do it!” My story leading me to Remedy was no different. 

As I look back, I really have been involved with Remedy since I was asked to be part of the call committee that brought Pastor Andy to theAlley. Since then, God has been moving me closer and closer to joining Remedy until I finally gave in to His urges that were tugging on my heart. 

I think that I was meant to say “yes” to Remedy a long time ago, but in my stubborn nature I instead weighed the pros and the cons of how I felt about leaving the Alley and joining Remedy. Not that I felt that God didn’t care about how I felt, but at the same time I wasn’t trusting him to take care of my needs while following Him. Admittedly and shamefully, there were a lot of factors that held me back from saying yes to God’s call:

1. I had a fear of joining Remedy and being in a close community with the people of Remedy, and putting my heart, love, and passion in to Remedy. From 2011 until earlier this year, I was involved with and worked for a ministry organization that I did put my heart, love, and passion into. I left this organization unexpectedly in February after some difficult conversations that blindsided me and left me reeling in hurt and guilt and confusion. Three weeks later I found out that this organization would be closing its doors at the beginning of April. There was fear in joining Remedy and putting myself in a vulnerable position to be hurt by or to lose something I loved. I didn’t feel strong enough to be able to handle that because even today, seven months later, I am still healing. 

2. I feared leaving the stability and easiness that I feel at theAlley. I had finally gotten to the point where I was comfortable there, and people knew who I was and I knew their names. I was involved in worship team, and new friends would invite me to lunch after church or ask me for updates on life happenings. Finally, I was feeling a sense of community. Why should I risk leaving that to go with a new church where there would be uncertainty in putting myself out there to meet new people or connect with people that I didn’t know as well? 

Did you notice, how I made each of these reasons about me? I am stubborn. I got hurt. I felt comfortable. Even though I had been praying earnestly about my decision, my perspective was in the wrong place. Thankfully, regardless of where we are, God can still work in the midst of our “I’s”. And he was revealing to me more Christ focused reasons why I should, in fact, go with Remedy. 

The number one reason (after this there needs to be none others) is that I truly felt God’s call. It was in those little moments tugging me to pray for Remedy, or to stay for dream meetings, or to go to Fourth Friday Worship that told me where God was leading me.

In the realm of still dealing with hurt and loss from my past job with the organization that I loved, I also feel that being a part of Remedy could be a part of God's healing story for me. I feel that there might be opportunities that could utilize my God-given gifts and passions that were used so fully at my last job that aren't being used in my new life as an administrative assistant.

What’s more, I feel like I am already a part of the Remedy community, and I love that. I love community and the ways in which God has created us to be in relationship with him and with one another. And already, Remedy has gifted me with a wonderful sense of community. This comes into play too, with the sort of "mission" that Remedy has adopted of "Connecting Disconnected People". One of my desires in any group of people is to make sure that everyone is included and feels welcome. I love that Remedy wants to do that in its community.

I am excited to continue on this journey in seeking God with Remedy. If you are reading this and there are various factors holding you back from joining remedy, I encourage you to pray and reflect on whether those reasons are self-honoring or God honoring. Regardless of if you go with Remedy or stay with theAlley, I’ll be praying you honor God in your decision and that He uses you to the Glory of His Kingdom.