If you follow this blog daily you know I’m in a short series of blog posts describing sentences that changed my life. These are sentences that a friend or family member I had a deep trust in or someone I had great admiration for voiced to me at some key moment in my life. The second of these sentences came from my dear friend and mentor, Tom Smoot.
Tom was gracious enough to place this very insecure, undisciplined eighteen year old college student on his summer missions team, The Son Share Players. The group was a small Christian drama troupe that traveled throughout Kentucky leading youth camps and performing Christian theater in churches, state parks, and in any other venue Tom where could get us a booking.
Each of us received our scripts long before arriving at Camp Cedarmore in Bagdad, Kentucky for the two weeks of intense training. We were to come with scripts memorized. As you might imagine, I came unprepared. Tom was very patient with me. I think he knew when he chose me that I would be more than a team member, that I would also be a project. At one point, in his frustration but with great restraint he said, “Just learn your part, Rick.”
I don’t know why but that sentence has been with me ever since. And what was my takeaway? Rick, you have a part in this world and you simply need to learn and live the part God has given you. If you know and do your part the whole drama of life will come together for you.
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I’ve done that ever since. In each of the roles I’ve been given I’ve done my best to learn and live my part as a father, as a husband, as a friend, as a Campus Minister, as a church staff member, as a church planter, as a pastor, as an author, and as a church consultant. And you know what, every time, ultimately, learning and playing out my part has been enough for me to know some level of peace, find fulfillment, and I pray to glorify God.
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Dedicated and Indebted to... Dan Flanagan, Tom Smoot, and Mel Doughty