Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Limiting Ourselves or Him?
I participated in a wonderful women’s ministry event this past Saturday morning where I was able to enjoy delicious food and stimulating conversation. Now that I think about it, though, the word I should use to describe the conversation was challenging…even, perhaps, convicting.
The woman leading the talk was trying to help the group become focused in their Christianity. She offered us some very useful advice on how to design a more goal/mission oriented approach for our Christian walk. I really liked the first steps, where we had to think of one or maybe two goals that we want to achieve as Christians, and state them as sort of mission statements. As the process became more specific, however, my anxiety kicked in.
Perhaps it was the nature of the goal I picked what made me lose focus. I wrote that I wanted to be more of a Christian mentor to my students at work. That is a lofty goal for me, who has always been a self-professed grasshopper/in the closet Christian at my work place. Or maybe it was the fact that I just can’t deal well with details and minutia. But by the end of the exercise I was paralyzed. By the time I had to write a list of actions that I would take on a daily basis to complete or move forward toward my goal, I couldn’t make my hand write anything.
I don’t know what to make of it. But I think, if I am completely honest, my problem, once again, boils down to trust…or lack of thereof. Now that I sit down to meditate on it, I believe that I don’t trust God to help me. If I were to actually take myself seriously and adopt the goal of becoming a Christian mentor to my students, I don’t trust He will be there for me to help me. The reason I find it so challenging is because I think that I have to do it alone and by my own strength and resources.
I know it in my head that His strength is how we are able to do anything. I know it in my mind that apart from Him I cannot do anything. I know it intellectually that His power is made perfect in my weakness. But I have not accepted any of these truths in my heart. I doubt. I lack faith.
What to do?
Well, for starters, I need to stop blaming others. I need to stop saying that the study or technique the leader chose for that lovely Saturday brunch event was not appropriate. Instead, I have to own my sense of inadequacy, be honest and admit the truth behind my struggle. I need to own my discomfort with the thought of doing anything outside my comfort zone and stop blaming circumstances.
Then, I need to come before God in prayer and offer Him my fears, insecurities and doubt, and ask Him to increase my faith. I need to ask Him to reveal Himself to me in a way that I may be confident on His presence and on His love.
Finally, I have to stop limiting God. He is Almighty, All-Powerful and All-Knowing. He created all. He sustains all. He speaks and galaxies appear. He can certainly take care of my needs when I risk it for the sake of His Name. I have to start asking Him for the supernatural power of His hand to be upon me so I can get off my behind, and get behind the goals that He is placing in my heart.
It is not easy and instantaneous. Trusting God is a process that takes time, but most of all, it takes time spent with Him. Trust is something that emerges as you get to know the subject of your trust intimately well. The fastest way to get to know The One We Can Trust, is by spending time with Him, reviewing His promises and seeking His face.
I don’t know if I will ever accomplish the goal that I loosely scribbled on my paper last Saturday. That may or may not be in God’s plan for me. But I do know that He will take care of all the details, meet every need, provide all things and bring in all the opportunities for me to do whatever it is that He has determined I need to do while on this shore of eternity.