Have you ever kept ice cream in the freezer a bit too long? You know you have if you remove the lid and see tiny ice crystals before you see the ice cream. You can still enjoy the ice cream, of course. Believe me, I know.

The clouds I saw out the window last night while flying home from the Hearts at Home convention in Bloomington, IL, looked like they had a top layer of those ice crystals. They were especially beautiful and unusual.

Flying here and there is part of what I do. Many people know me when there’s a microphone in my hand. Or, maybe it’s my books or radio interviews that introduce them to the ministry of Celebrate Kids, Inc. But, there’s so much more to it.

I’m sometimes asked if I still enjoy traveling. Without hesitation, I can say “Yes.” Then I follow it up with this comment: “When God called me to the ministry, He called me to all of it.”

Help your children understand that what they see people do – including you – is only a part of the action. There’s so much that’s often hidden or ignored.

In my case, God called me to a speaking and writing ministry. It’s a privilege to influence so many people in these ways. It’s fun. It’s also hard work. Exhausting. Exhilarating. Fulfilling.

Because I know it’s a call and I know God equips us, I’m able to handle it all. To God be the glory!

Since I’m an introvert, all the one-on-one conversations and opportunities to autograph books fatigue me. But, they’re among my favorite experiences.

God equips us when He calls us.

Since I have a degenerative joint disease in my left foot, it almost always aches and pain is frequent especially at events like the one this past week that involved 2½ days in the exhibit booth, 7 presentations, and all the walking to-and-from.

God equips us when He calls us.

Airplanes, taxis, airport shuttles, rental cars, hotel lobbies, hotel rooms, many restaurants, getting lost, late flights, too much traffic, …. It’s ALL part of the ministry.

God equips us when He calls us.

Packing, lifting, unpacking, packing, lifting, unpacking, packing, lifting, unpacking, …

God equips us when He calls us.

Even yesterday’s delayed flight and unplanned, extra time in the airport was part of the action. I didn’t necessarily like it and it’s not how Linda and I would have planned the end of a beautiful few days, but it was part of God’s plan. And, we chose to not allow the interruption to steal our joy.

God equips us when He calls us.

God totally equips us because He calls us totally.

Make sure your kids know this, understand this, and see this in the people around them. When people ask me how they can know God’s call, I sometimes explain that joy and contentment are our companions even when things don’t go perfectly. Even today, when I’m so tired I feel like a truck ran over me, turned around, and did it again just to make sure, I wouldn’t trade this for anything. Nothing.

Surround your children with people living in joy with contentment so they know these are possible qualities in the middle of a mess and they seek them for themselves.

Believe God totally equips us because He calls us totally.