For years now I have struggled with hearing statements like, “The older generation should pass the baton to the younger generation” or “I see a generation rising to take their place.” Now some might argue that there is nothing wrong with these statements, but I think there is: God never asks us to stop running our race! And when we use the phrase “pass your baton” to imply that somehow God is finished with using us, we have done a disservice to each other.
I’m not done running my race and neither are you, so carry your baton and run your race!
I’ve often shared with people how I feel the best years of my life are yet to come. And for those wondering how old I am, I’ll be 49 in November.
So what if we took the “pass the baton” language and starting committing ourselves to aligning together where we can? To running with each other when we can? To championing for the picking up of another’s baton where we can? To serving together where we can? To distributing levels of responsibility where we can? To creating space for others where we can?
We can do that! But we should never stop living for Jesus and saying “yes” to the things we’ve been called to do!
This past weekend I had the opportunity to speak at the 19th annual Women’s Journey of Faith Conference. I am newer to the speaker platform, and I had the privilege of sharing the stage with women such as Sheila Walsh, Tressa Lemky, and Moira Brown. And you know what I gleaned from observing them, praying with them, and laughing with them? I learned this: They are carrying their baton until Jesus takes them home!
You see I think your baton is your call to follow Jesus and to let your good deeds be shown so others may come to know Jesus. There are purposes and plans for your life that Jesus has prepared in advance for you to do – it’s your baton. So can I plead with you to recognize that your life is worth living! Can I implore you to own the truth that your journey matters? Can I invite you to live deliberately by inviting you to commit yourself to stewarding wisely the opportunities you’re given? You need to engage in living as long as your living!
I felt nervous, excited, and empowered to be part of the speakers at the WJOF 2018 Conference. The Spirit affirmed over and over that my journey is only beginning.
So, friends, I’m not passing my baton but am committed to carrying it, are you committed to carrying yours?
Believing you matter and your life has a purpose.
p.s. I love that the WJOF of faith team could capture these photos!
The Reverend Carmen Kampman is a woman on the road of leadership. Ordained with the PAOC, she is a steward of God’s call to women in ministry, and the founder of LEAD Women, a ministry equipping Christian women for leadership. She is also VP of Advancement at Horizon College & Seminary, and a graduate student in the Masters of Leadership program at Briercrest Seminary.