That One Thing that Will make All the Difference

Most of the time, I am a fish out of water in this neighborhood. I am the minority in a city and country where I am the majority. I speak one language in a place where most of my neighbors have at least two or three or six on their list. Often, I step into people’s home without the faintest idea what the visit will bring. I lead a homework center even though I’ve tutored kids for less than a year. Two days a week I lead a sewing group in which I am woefully unqualified for. Speaking of this group, I cannot stress to you how unqualified I am to lead it. I can sew in a straight line, but I don’t care enough about details to cut fabric correctly, and while we’re on it, why are patterns so confusing to understand?

I digress.

Here’s what you need to know. I’m essentially faking it till I make it, and so many other people in this world are much more qualified for the role I’m in. They’re better suited for this city and this ministry.

But they’re not here.
I am.

I am deeply unqualified, but I am here. And you are exactly where you are. This is not by accident.

The Father has put me here—sitting in the homes of refugees, hearing people’s stories, leading things I never imagined. He’s asked me to help men and women apply for jobs and help them understand the barrage of emails they receive from their child’s school. He’s opened doors for me to visit them, teach them, learn from them, and experience life alongside them.

I am deeply unqualified, but I am here. And you are exactly where you are. This is not by accident.

Our worlds may look drastically different. Our schedule and time and community may not resemble each other’s in the slightest, and that’s ok. I think so often we get caught in the comparison game. At least, I know I do. I look at other’s stories and life and the world I catch only glimpses of on social media and I think to myself, “Yikes! I’m not __ enough next to them.”

Fill in the blank with whatever you want. We’ve all been there.

But here’s what this neighborhood teaches me day after day, moment by moment. We don’t always have to be qualified or the most qualified to be used by the Father right where we are. Most people in our world aren’t really looking for someone who is qualified. They’re looking for someone who is consistent. They need a person they can count on, a person they can call, a person they can laugh and cry with, a person who sticks to their word. Most people need someone who won’t back out or back down.

Our world needs the consistent rather than qualified, because our Father will qualify us for whatever situation He gives us.

Our world needs the consistent rather than qualified, because our Father will qualify us for whatever situation He gives us.

This has been the constant refrain from the Father to me since I moved to Chicago. “Consistency, Kate. Be consistent.” Honestly, sometimes I just don’t want to be consistent. I’d rather back out of commitments or blame my inconsistency on busyness. It’s so easy to do, because guess what? It’s true. I am busy. I’ve never been busier in my life than when I moved to Chicago.

But consistency is greater than busyness, and if the busyness of life and ministry keep me from being consistent with others, the balance is off.

Sometime last Spring, a family I visited weekly moved far away—just far enough to stretch my 7-minute commute into 30-45 minutes one way. My boss gave me an out. He told me I could visit a new family. After all, the needs are so great in this neighborhood. He could connect me with someone else.

We won’t always get it right, but may we choose consistency. Because someday that consistency just might build something beautiful.

But that still small voice came again, “Consistency, Kate. Be consistent.”

Through gritted teeth, I battled the traffic week after week to see this family. I struggled through the parking nightmare at the end of each night, and I didn’t always have the best attitude. I’m human. Some days are hard.

Today, though, this family and I experience a richness in relationship that is unlike any I share with others in this neighborhood. The Father has opened doors and given me opportunities I don’t deserve to love on this family in His name. And that one thing that seemed so difficult in the moment has become the thing that built this beautiful relationship—consistency.

Friend, our worlds might look very different on the outside, but at the heart of it all, we aren’t so different. The Father has put people in your life. Some are easy to love and convenient. They are ones you look forward to celebrating and spending time with. Others are the opposite in nearly every way, but they are still in your life. I think more times than not, the Father looks around this world for people who will choose consistency, the ones who will stick with others even when it requires sacrifice and selflessness.

We won’t always get it right, but may we choose consistency. Because someday that consistency just might build something beautiful.

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1 Comment

  1. Starry

    Love it, Kate!!!

    Thanks for sharing it.
    It is so encouraging that God has put us in the particular place for His reasons, even though we may not qualify or qualify.
    And about consistency, it is very important to serve in the Kingdom of God with that attitude.

    Keep up the good work!!!

    Blessings and Love,

    Starry

    Reply

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