Firstfruits began with an idea: How could women’s needs to gather with other women, experience God’s love and go forth more centered on their own giftedness and purpose be met? Then the Holy Spirit stepped in and something powerful happened!
In the beginning … Firstfruits began as a vision for a women’s ministry whose purpose was to gather women to experience God’s love. And as a result, be transformed!

As word spread about this unique opportunity, other parishes became interested in hosting a Firstfruits gathering. It became apparent to the founders of Firstfruits that this “gathering” needed to be moveable. We became known as a moveable feast of spiritual opportunities for women.

Just Do It

God has determined, unless I interfere with his plan
that I should reach that which is my greatest happiness.
John Henry Cardinal Newman

If you have ever been to Firstfruits you have seen this quote on a black foam board outside the entrance to our Elm Grove space. I see it often. In fact, so often that I don’t really see it anymore. Kind of like the dust bunnies under the couch and the cobwebs in the corners of most of our rooms at home.

Last week for some reason as I was unlocking the front door at Firstfruits, I glanced up at the quote and it really grabbed my attention. Read it again and really let this promise sink in. God has determined that you should reach that which is your greatest happiness.  Aren’t we all searching for happiness? Often in the wrong places and from the wrong people.

True happiness comes from a relationship with God. He has a plan that will bring us to our greatest happiness this side of eternity with Him. The key words, and what really struck me last week, was the “unless I interfere” part.

Often, we think of interference as an action, something we do that is an obstacle, but it can also come from something we don’t do. The interference can come from failing to act on something. Like a prompting or restlessness calling us to discern and use our God given gifts.

Did you know that by virtue of our baptism we have all been given a mission by God? That mission is to bring His goodness and love to the world. That mission is universal. The way in which we are called to carry out that mission and to whom we are called to bring His goodness and love to is as varied as there are people on this planet.

God has uniquely gifted each of us for this mission and brings the people and situations to our lives that need our gifts. Our job is to discern those gifts and be open to using them as we are called to use them.

That is how we bring God’s goodness and love to the world and great happiness and joy to our own lives. Because the gifts we have been given and the unique “work” we are called to are perfect for us. More perfect than we could think up ourselves because they are given to us by our Creator, the One who knows us better than we know ourselves.

Part of God’s plan for us to reach “that which is our greatest happiness” centers on our giftedness and the purpose He has for giving us those gifts. So, if we are so gifted and there is a unique work that we are called to join Him in that will bring great joy to our lives, why haven’t we all reached that happiness?

Because we interfere.   Or should I say our inner fears interfere. Our greatest gifts are often wrapped in our greatest fears. It’s time to unwrap them.

Are you restless to do more with your life? Do you feel stuck between where your life has been and where it’s going? Do you wonder what you should be doing?

Do you have a strong prompting that has been put on your heart that won’t let up?

Are you ready to know the greatest happiness that God longs to give you?

Join us for the six-week Called and Gifted series at Firstfruits starting Tuesday, February 5, 9:15-11:15 or Saturday, February 9, 8:30-10:30. I will personally join you on this exciting journey of discernment and discovery, sharing my stories of the fears, the challenges, the triumphs, and the joy that was all a part of the creation of Firstfruits.

You have gifts. You have a calling. What are you waiting for?


Joan Carey, Firstfruits executive director, is an author and speaker with a passion for helping women grow in their relationships with God. Her Ponder This book contains a series of modern day parables sure to get you thinking about and seeing our extraordinary God in our ordinary experiences. Joan invites you to use resources on this website for daily reflection in your journey to grow in God's loving care for you.
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