A New Garden for a New Season
By: Alexa Rossi
I had the privilege of participating in several events recently with the Collaborative to discuss the pending launch of vocational guilds for Christian development in faith and work. Dr. Andrzej Tukanik of the Quo Vadis Institute in Europe discussed the idea of vocation as a garden. The Lord gives each of us tools and skills to be used to maintain and steward the garden with which we have been entrusted. Of the many ideas we mulled over, the one most memorable for me was the idea that an individual might be called to steward several vocational callings, several sections of the greater garden, throughout his or her lifetime. It is humbling to think that the Lord uniquely equips each of us to create beauty in our spheres through our work, for the common good and for a specific time.
My friend Melissa Crabtree (and First Pres supported mission partner) comes to mind when I think of the sentiment Dr. Turkanik was sharing with us. She has held several vocations across the last 25 years with Cru and is currently in a season of transition-- leaving her current vocation with the National Campus Office to be the Chief of Staff for the Global Human Resources Vice President. Though I have only known Melissa for a short time, I see how the Lord has gripped her heart to live for the edification of others. She shared with me that she was sensing the Lord signaling her time to move on, the garden of this vocation in full bloom. Melissa is at peace and ready for this new season, which the Lord has set apart for a specific time, her identity securely resting in Christ.
Would you join us in praying for her in this time of transition?
We know that Melissa is an incredible instrument in the Lord’s hands. We, as her brothers and sisters in Christ at First Pres, are recipients of the fruit of her obedience to the Lord in many ways! Melissa was recently appointed as a deacon, she serves on the FaithServes Leadership Team, greets in the lobby every 2nd Sunday, attends the Basics Sunday School class, and participates in Women Engaged Bible studies. She’s around all the time and would love to get to know you! You can also find her in worship at the 8:15am service on Sundays.
Even though her main role with Cru is changing, Melissa will continue to care for Cru staff all around the world that aren’t at headquarters here in Orlando. She recently returned from visiting a family working for the Jesus Film in Thailand that she has been caring for over the years. While she was overseas, she also hosted a regional women’s conference in Cambodia.
Finally, we’d like to thank Melissa for her heart for our mission in Madagascar. For the last several years, she has hosted a garage sale to benefit our Malagasy friends. She just hosted one in her neighborhood last month and raised $789.56! She welcomes volunteers and donations, so keep her in mind around Spring Break of 2019. :)
It is a gift to be a part of the commissioning of Melissa for this new season as her church family. May the Lord bless you and keep you, Melissa, as you continue to seek the Kingdom of God here on earth as it is in heaven!