Anyone that knows Jen Budd, knows that it's difficult to walk away from being around her with out a smile on your face and feeling a bit more passionate about living life to the fullest. Her heart for the church, for the arts and for others is unending. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching her grow and mature for the last few years. God has birthed a passion to do something fantastic in her. I have enjoyed watching in anticipation as Jen had continued to take steps towards each revealed part of God's plan for her!!!
Be abundantly blessed Jen. Thank you so much for taking the time to put this post together!!! As you take each step forward, God will always be there to lead you to the next!!! Remember that a calling isn't a destination but a journey, embrace the adventure!!!
THE JOURNEY OF AN ARK-BUILDERBy Jen Budd
I have a problem.
And that problem is sometimes my biggest strength but sometimes my greatest weakness.
I have passion. So why is that a problem?
You see I am the type of person that will commit everything and be the typical outgoing “cheerleader” for causes that I agree with. The problem with that is, I get easily swayed into numerous passions, which puts me in a place of confusion. For example, most of my life I wanted to study Musical Theatre, then midwifery, then back into theatre, then I wanted to go into the Ministry full-time. My life, up until a few months ago, has been a constant confusing path of where my time and energy should be invested. Do you see the problem yet?
I allowed my passionate feelings and excitement to sway my life’s destiny.
My newest revelation has been that it is not our passion that should sway our life, but rather be the fuel to maintain what God has said to us. It is the gas that keeps the vision in motion. And God is the steering wheel. And when passion is not directed in the right gas tank, the driver gets confused and asks “Why isn’t this working the way it should?”
My youth leader, Paul Dunk, always said that passion means, “to suffer with”. So, what was I willing to suffer with, through thick and thin, and more than all of my other passions? I could not answer that question.
So I went on a journey. I took this year to really listen to what God was leading me to. Long story short, I have found and embraced my destiny. My vision is to be an ambassador of Christ in the music industry. It is a vision that makes complete sense now. It incorporates how I was made, what I have done in my life, my gifts and talents, and my desire to glorify God by reaching the lost and the broken through the power of music. So what was stopping me now?
I allowed fear and doubt to limit, deter, and pause my life’s destiny.
It’s interesting that all my life, I have always wanted to record my own songs and pursue an artist career, but I was too ashamed of those big dreams to even think I could be good enough to walk that path. So I looked for other paths that were similar, but not the exact place God wanted me to be.
So finally I was passionate (determination, willingness to lay my life down for the cause AND feelings), but I stood there frozen. Frozen because I feared the rejection that was bound to happen in this business. Frozen because I feared others in my own life would not agree that this was my calling. Frozen because I began doubting myself. Frozen because I doubted that God would choose an amateur like me to have all these big dreams that I knew I could not do in my own strength.
I now needed faith and trust.
I know with all my heart that God is calling me to the music industry. So I need to trust in what HE SAID not my own wavering feelings. I need to trust that what God has promised me will come to pass. Because He said it. Period.
Thus, I am recording my first EP (CD that is 3-5 songs), which is a little daunting. The only thing that gets me to the studio when I feel inadequate is that I must obey God and His calling. It is a vulnerable process because the songs I write are my musical testimony, unveiling feelings and perspectives that some would only have in a personal journal. I, however, now have a public diary. But this is good, because I want the words to speak to others, allowing them to feel understood, and giving them hope in circumstances.
In a lot of ways, I feel like Noah. God asked him to build a massive ark, even when there was NO SIGN OF RAIN. But because God asked, Noah obeyed. He went through the rejection of his people. He went through hard labour and invested his passion into building this “impossible” task. And if he was me, he would have endured a lot of allergies.
So in my life, my own music, the business that comes along with that, and my own character is the ark I am preparing for now. I am not famous enough to build an ark as big as I am preparing for (in the world’s eyes), but I am preparing for it. Because God has asked. Once the ark was built and the rain started pouring, then came a time of being still and knowing He is God. Noah, his family, and all those animals were on that ark for a long time. They remained still and knew that He is God, even through the ocean’s storms and the ocean’s calm motionlessness. It was then that the dove, the sign of hope and God’s faithfulness, came and led them to the land which was promised.
The ark that I am building, like Noah’s, is not of my own design. God designed it. Noah was not a professional ark builder. And yet he made a huge ark by God’s grace. The great thing about the size of the ark is that boats were not built this size until the 19th century. HAHA!! I love it when God does crazy things like that. He designs an ark that has never been done before and gets an amateur to do it. So great!
So, you have all heard a bit about the ark I am preparing…what is the ark God is asking of you to prepare?
If you do not know yet, have faith and ask Him to reveal the blueprints (spoiler alert: you will probably not get your whole life plan. It seems that God likes us relying on Him, which requires trust in those “risky” times).
If you have some of the blueprints, then what is stopping you from building?