“Whatever you do, do all things to the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31 –

Do you long for greater ministry opportunities? Does it seem as if your work for God and His kingdom are not enough? Do you believe that God has forgotten about you?

We may at times feel lost and overlooked… yet we are never lost to our God. His divine plan continues to unfold in our lives as believers. He has placed each of us where we are for a reason. He desires that we bloom where He plants us… even if it is not where we would like to be planted.

“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much.” – Luke 16:10

Scripture shows us heroes of faith who spend time in God’s training ground. Moses, Jacob and David spend years shepherding sheep before God calls them to shepherd His people. Joseph and Daniel spend years faithfully serving God in lesser venues before God calls them to lead nations.

These Bible greats faithfully pursue God and His will throughout their years of training… although they are perhaps not aware they are in God’s training ground. He draws them apart from their comfortable lives and draws them close to Him. During these times, He tests their loyalty and challenges their faith.

Imagine how they must have felt… “Has God abandoned me? Has He forgotten the bravery, faith and dedication to Him that I’ve shown in the past? Does He not see my potential?”

Yet God has not forgotten them. At just the right time, and in line with His divine purpose, He reaches out and calls them into powerful ministries… notable positions where they can serve and glorify Him.

God’s training ground is never easy. Just as a soldier is trained and tested for battle, so God prepares these Bible heroes for the battles that lie ahead. He teaches them courage in times of trial, strength to carry on, and faith to stay true to Him.

“Where did this Man get such wisdom and miraculous powers?… Isn’t this the carpenter’s son?” – Matthew 13:54-55

Jesus mentors for us the right attitude while waiting on God’s call and timing. Our Lord spends years awaiting His appointed time. In His culture, apprenticeship begins at a young age. Jesus diligently works in carpentry until the age of thirty when He begins His ministry. Our Lord does not disdain his carpentry trade or consider it beneath Him. He loyally works His craft alongside his earthly father Joseph.

Jesus needs no training in God’s training ground. As the Son of God, He is set apart and fully prepared for His kingdom work on earth. Although He could have stepped out in power at any time, working miracles and wonders, He knows His time has not yet come. He recognizes the importance of abiding in God’s will. He humbly and patiently waits for God’s perfect timing.

“He cuts off every branch in Me that bears no fruit, and every branch that does bear fruit, He prunes to make it even more fruitful.” – John 15:2

When God places His calling on our lives, He often has us enter into His training ground. He draws us from our comfortable lives and draws us to Himself. We are to follow in the footsteps of Jesus in this time of training as we are molded and shaped by the hand of our Creator. He prunes us and readies us for the future responsibilities He has in store.

We may bristle at a lowly position in ministry. Yet God has not forgotten us. He watches to see our attitude. We remember Jesus who applies Himself to His carpentry trade with a dedication to honor God with His work. God will reward us as we humbly dedicate ourselves to the work He has given us.

Often our expectations for our ministries differ from God’s plans. We may believe we could be doing so much more for His kingdom in another ministry… another town… another country. Yet He has placed us where we are to honor and serve Him. When we prove ourselves worthy of the tasks before us, He will open up new doors of opportunity.

“Whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” – Colossians 3:17

As we await God’s call and perfect timing, we are not to treat lightly the work He has given us. We remain open to His possibilities, not just our own. We maintain a spirit of obedience to His will, honoring and serving Him wherever we are.

God’s times of training may include trials and testing. Yet this is all to make us battle-ready. Our God equips us for whatever battles we may face. For those He calls, He prepares. He sets us apart and fortifies us for the ministries ahead, imparting to us His power, bravery and faith.

In God’s training ground, we are taught the purpose of our lives. To glorify Him, to carry out His will and to reflect the attributes of Christ to the world. We bloom wherever God plants us as we await His perfect timing.