“Do I have what it takes?”
This is a question that has haunted my mind most of my life. Whatever the season; no matter how proficient I am, there still seems to be combatant thoughts of inadequacies that prevent me from taking big leaps of faith, when I know that I should.
Deep down, I completely understand that these thoughts are planted from the enemy and stem from insecurities of myself that most people do not see. However, recognizing something for what it is doesn’t negate the power and stronghold that it can have over oneself.
I have struggled with these feelings for a while now and have reluctantly let them deter me from fulfilling the calling the Lord has for my life. I frequently find myself juxtaposing the knowledge of my calling with the feelings of my inadequacy. Even recently, this fight inside has been so real that I came close to respectfully declining Travis & Kyra’s invitation to guest write for their Blog. I’m so glad I did not.
My fear of insecurity, fear of failure, and fear of the unknown have all kept me in a state of bondage, attempting to deter me from seeing my greatest potential.
Isn’t it funny how God can continually confirm His calling to you, through His Word, through His people, even complete strangers, and yet, you still find yourself questioning whether you can do it?
Please tell me I’m not alone here.
If that has been you for a season, I would like to quickly share a solution I recently discovered that has changed my mentality, allowed me to see the open door in my prison of fear and ultimately, altered the trajectory of my entire life.
With that in mind, I am writing this through a lens of insecurity, doubt, and fear; knowing that the Lord has spoken a better word over me.
I was reading the other day, a passage in Exodus Chapter 4 where God is presenting an opportunity for Moses to lead the Israelites out of captivity from Pharaoh. The Lord poses a simple question to Moses: “What is in your hand?” After which Moses replies, “It’s just a staff”.
I mean Moses was eighty years old at the time, so I can imagine him needing a little help getting his arthritic knees up the mountain to meet with God. Without going into the entire story, the Lord eventually tells Moses to throw his staff down on the ground. When he did so, the staff turned into a serpent. (This is where the story would’ve ended for me. I don’t do snakes.)
But God proceeds to ask Moses to pick up the serpent. Once he did, it became a staff again. This staff is the same instrument that Moses used to call the plagues down over Egypt and the very same tool he used to part the Red Sea that allowed the Lord’s people to cross safely to the other side, delivering them from their own state of bondage under Pharaoh’s rule.
I am amazed by this entire story but perhaps the most interesting part is God’s initial question to Moses. It wasn’t, “What don’t you have that you think you need?” or “What do you wish you had to get started?” Nope. He simply asked, “What is in your hand?”
God can and actually wants to use only what you currently possess in order to answer His calling for your life, even if it’s a petrified walking stick.
Remember, the less you possess the greater the production. It’s just another way for God to show off and get all of the credit for the outcome.
One thing I’ve learned, is what we see as inadequate due to our insecurities, God sees as more than enough due to His mightiness.
The only instrument Moses had in his hand was the exact tool God was looking for.
Yet, our God is a perfect gentleman and will never take what you don’t surrender (even though everything comes from Him in the first place, but that’s another post). All it takes is this humbling recognition that what you currently have in your hand is all you need to get started.
God wants to turn your “I only” into “If only”.
“I only have a stick, I only have $100 in the bank, I only have a high school diploma….”
Right now, I believe God is listening and waiting for you to stop with your excuses, so He can respond by saying, “Only? Only?! I’m the one who gave you all those things and IF ONLY you’d give out of what you have and watch me do immeasurably more than you can ever imagine…” (See Ephesians 3:20)
…If only you’d watch Me turn your staff into a serpent and then part the waters. If only you’d wait and see how I multiply your $100 into a $1000. If only you’d look at how I’ve orchestrated a position that you don’t think you’re qualified for, but I’ve set you apart for. If only you could see that I’m working all things together for your good, but I need you to surrender your staff.
It is my hope that anyone reading this would see their own inadequacies and shortcomings through the lens of our loving Savior. He is going to do so much in and through you as you answer His call for your life.
Remember, a career demands credentials but your calling doesn’t require qualification. It just takes recognition, surrender, and a little bit of faith to trust God to do the rest.
I quote this to myself often, but I believe someone needs to hear it today: “God is turning the ‘mess of me’ into a masterpiece.”
That is the beautiful thing about walking in the calling of God: you don’t have to have it all together.
With Him, you are stronger and more capable than you’ve ever realized and for every Goliath that you’re up against, there is a David that is inside of you.
So, the next time insecurity, doubt, or fear try to rear their ugly heads, I encourage you to look at what’s in your hand. Even if it’s broken pieces of nothingness, surrender. And watch, as the Potter molds you into what you were created to be all along.
It’s time to break the chains and take a stand against the lies. Right now, I pray for the Lord to give you a better word so that you can finish the sentence He has written for you instead of believing the fragment the enemy has said about you.
Lastly, don’t ever forget that who you were and where you've been is nothing compared to who you are and where you're headed.
Your calling begins today.