I became a lay minister in 2012. I’ve always felt called to be outside the walls of the church rather than inside the church building. I felt that if God was calling me to this, it was to be with the people who didn’t know him yet and to share the love that I find with God.

Smiling woman wearing sunglasses, a scarf and a cross necklace

Then, five years ago, I could see when I left the sofa, and by the time I got to the top of the stairs I was blind. Within a few months I couldn’t walk either.

Everything stopped. Before, everyone in the community knew me. I was everywhere. Suddenly I couldn’t leave the house on my own. I couldn’t even get around the house on my own. It took a couple of years to get a diagnosis, but I’ve got a neurological condition.

My bishop at the time said, ‘This doesn’t change who you are, it doesn’t change how you’re called, it doesn’t change what God wants you to be, because God called you as you, for who you are.’

It was so very affirming in amongst the fear and the crazy situation. It was a heck of a journey for a year. I had to rest into the importance of being. I really believe God doesn’t call any of us to be endlessly doing. He calls us to be exactly who we are at the very moment we’re in, to be who he wants us to be.

For a year of my life that meant doing very little, but being very open to God, and being very honest about how I felt. More and more I have felt peace with this idea that when we can really be ourselves, take off the masks, take off all of the ego, then we can really be who God wants us to be.


A green leaf outline with a brown stem used as the Renewal & Reform logo

Discover your calling with Everyday Faith and Kingdom Calling as part of Renewal and Reform, aimed at creating a growing Church for all people and in all places.

Source URL: https://www.churchofengland.org/our-faith/everyday-faith/everyday-stories/called-who-you-are