I don’t know what you call this: this thing that I find myself going through a lot. But I do wonder how many of the rest of you out there do the very same thing?
The longer I press in and grow closer in my relationship to Jesus, the more I seem to think that I know about surrender, risk and ultimately, faith. At the very least (in all fairness to myself), I typically think that once I’ve applied and learned a good lesson from the Lord once in my little old life, that I won’t have to learn it and intentionally work at reapplying it all over again.
Nope. Not happening that way.
It is true, we do learn more and understand Jesus all the better the longer we walk with Him. Our pastor was just sharing about that the other night. Yet I find that just when I think I have learned a certain principle or teaching or lesson from the scripture, I’m in a new situation in which it is as though I am having to apply it all over again, just as though I forgot it or something! Like I didn’t learn anything at all from past experience or something.
Let me try to elaborate to be more clear: Right now, this picture will sum up for you the particular lesson that I thought that I should have learned, and learned quite well by now. I should be an EXPERT at this dudes!
Nope, and nope all over again.
Ug! What is my problem in regard to this anyway? Why do I have to learn this over and over and over again – ad nauseam? Do I not have faith enough to remember how much He has delivered me from in the past when I had no idea what I was doing? Is my flesh that stubborn that I will continue on forever, diminishing what God is capable (and more) of doing in me and through me if I only step out in faith and just trust Him already? Am I really going to continue to hold back from things He is calling me to do out of fear, trepidation, doubt?
Fear is a liar – a perpetual and impulsive one. And oh yes, a malicious one.
And then, I think about our dear disciples – the dear friends of Jesus that He chose to walk alongside Him. He didn’t choose the smartest ones, and He didn’t choose the ones who were “ready” and “prepared” for everything they were about to embark upon if they walked with Him and followed after Him and love Him with all their “heart, mind, soul and strength.” Luke 10:27 No.He simply called them.
And they simply followed.
Man alive, I am one to be daunted by things if I don’t feel “prepared” or “adequate” or “up to the task.” Fact is, any time I have ever waited to step out until I feel safe about it, or relatively ready for it, I simply find out later that I wasn’t all the way ready like I thought anyway. Sheesh.
Yes, we are going to feel daunted in those times that we undertake something that we are being called to by Jesus, especially when we are facing what seem to be insurmountable obstacles or things that don’t make sense. We are going to feel daunted if we try to make every step we take be laced with rose petals, carefully mapped out, and only venturing along what we little humans perceive to be the “safe” path.
The truth of the matter is that it is HE who will make our paths straight. It’s not to be found in the kind of shoes we choose to wear, the compass that we think we can rely upon in our back pocket, the people we are following, or the maps that we are reading. Only HE adequately equips us.
And He does so in His own timing.
We tend to measure outcomes, especially what seem to be successful ones, by some strange litmus test that makes sense to us. Does anyone out there know what I am saying here? We tend to think if a person is chosen for this or that, or gets the opportunity to do something they never thought possible, they are either just lucky or they have what it takes.
I “have what it takes” to do lots of things that I am NOT being called by Jesus to do in life right now, my friends. How do I know what I am NOT being called to? Well, lately, it’s the things that seem to make a whole lot of sense – those things that I can feel in my bones I’d be great and successful at right off the bat – that I know from that still small voice I am not suppsed to do.
It’s just the season I’m in right now. It’s the thing(s) that He’s trying to teach me through that uncomfortable place right now. That’s what He’s been calling me to do and where He’s been calling me to be.
Yes, it seems He is calling me more and more to step out and do things that don’t make sense initially by man’s standards and measurements, but certainly do make total sense in relation to Christ, His purpose for me and others in my life, and in bringing glory to Him through my inadequacy.
If you are like me, there are really only two questions to ask yourself if you have prayed about a decision and God is leading you to step out in faith to do something you don’t feel fully equipped to do:
Are you willing?
Do you trust in HIM?