I was wrestling between staying or leaving a church ministry when I read Ps Henson’s book “Say to Archippus”. I knew that staying would be out of obligation to my ministry leader and the team, and I was inclined to leave because I had felt the strain of being ‘wrongly fit’, at the same time I had a strange, unmistakable inkling that I was called to do something else.
I picked up the book in mid-2015, not long after it was first commissioned, and over the period when I was reading it, God opened my eyes to the realisation that one’s Christian life was so much more than church activities. I felt like God was giving me a permission to discover what He was calling me to do. It was such a liberating realisation! But first, there would be so much re-alignment needed in my life.
After being awakened, I had a few years of wrestling with God in the wilderness, receiving healing in many areas, and learning to adopt a heart of submission and obedience to Him. I was finally given greater clarity of my God-given assignment, in using my creative and writing gifts, as well as digital know-how, to bring kingdom influence to the social media and digital sphere. Furthermore, my active involvement in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu as a coach and community pioneer earned me a platform to lead by example and speak life into young women, youth and children. I see how God has placed me in positions of favour to impact the next generation in a way that churches might not be able to.
In order to effectively lead in this area, I had to allow God to put me through the fire to ‘purify’ me from negative and ungodly mindsets that I had carried over the years. This consecration process continues to this day and it demands that I stay close to God, stay teachable, and stay humble to change and correction. Truly, even as I gain influence through my assignment, I need to be aligned over and over. Truly, I cannot do all these apart from the power of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit!
One of my ongoing struggles is coming to terms that my assignment is ’same same but different’ – that yes, I am called to reach the young adults, youth, and children but it does not mean I am called to be in next-generation ministries in church. I remember sensing as a young Christian that God would call me to lead youths. However, when I tried to join the youth ministry, I knew instantly in my spirit that this was not the place I was meant to be in. This is such a clear testament that God does not call everyone to church ministry, even if He calls us to a similar people group. He puts different people in different sub-cultures within that people group. I remember Him asking me clearly in 2017 that if everyone only ministered to young people in the church and ‘common’ organisations like schools or rehabilitation centres, what about those in the other smaller communities?
As I grow, I start having so much gratitude that God truly calls everyone to all people groups. No one is forgotten by Him. I also proactively surround myself with and meet with strong and mature female Christians for prayer, support, and accountability. I’m grateful that as I boldly share about my assignment, more Christians are aware of what God is doing outside the church, in small communities in Singapore and Asia.
My continued prayer is that as Christians, we will come to a point where we will choose the fear of the Lord over the fear of man. Having to share kingdom values on a global platform where truth is constantly distorted and believers are shamed into keeping silent (or be persecuted), I’m starting to realise that we have to keep praying for every Christian, particularly leaders in public ministries, to be bold in staying true to God’s Word. It really is hard to stand for the truth today, but let us fix our eyes on the finishing line and stay faithful to the end, remembering that the ‘end’ is the glorious part: When the Bridegroom comes for His Bride (us, the church!).
The reader may sense Sue-Ann’s focus and robust commitment to her kingdom assignment. When we know our God-given kingdom assignments, it provides focus and encourages commitment. This in turn guards against being overly stretched in Christian activities that one may channel resources and energies to the fulfilment of kingdom assignments. Read “Clarify Your Assignments” in Alignment Check to clarify your assignment by applying the five aspects of People, Purpose, Plan, Place and Period.
About Sue-Ann Tan
Sue-Ann discovered her love for storytelling when she wrote her first story at age 8. Today, she channels her passion into her own content marketing business CULTURE127, where she imparts kingdom beliefs to young adults and youth via social media platforms. Also a diehard romantic, she recently wrote her first book Happily Ever After Exists, a “love story” detailing an encounter with God, the original author of marriage and romance.