When I was asked to write these devotionals, I immediately said “yes”. Those that know me well, know that my “yes” is evidence of a transformed life. The idea, the very thought of writing something that would be read by others has long filled me with personal doubt. I was never a very good student, and I have very little writing experience. I even shared this fact with some friends while seeking wise counsel about going back to school. Writing has always been my academic “Achilles heel”, and it is on my short list of reasons that I dropped out of college (more than once). In spite of all of this, I never hesitated to commit. Above all else, I want to be found faithful so I had already determined that I would serve however I was asked. (I have to laugh about it now- God really has such a wonderful sense of humor. I never could have imagined in a million years that I would be asked to do such a thing!)
Please know, that I’m not boasting in myself. My “yes” was based solely on my belief that God would show up. After all, God changed Gideon from a frightened man hiding on the threshing floor into a mighty warrior; surely, He could work through me to write a few words that maybe no one would read. “I will do it”, I thought. “With God’s help, I will!” Then, I did the only thing left to do, I asked for God’s help! As usual, He reminded me pretty quickly who He is! God is the writer of the most beautiful, powerful, and life-changing, work of literature of all time. Therefore, He is the greatest writer of all time. He has inspired the writing of men since man could write. I would write, but really, I knew it would be Him. God would be my Holy Ghost writer! The very idea of that delighted me! I’m living proof that God can use anyone, for any purpose, at any time, regardless of experience, or past sins, doubts, failures, or personal shortcomings. It doesn’t even matter what your spiritual gifts assessment says. If God calls you to do something, and you respond in obedience, He is going to give you what you need. He has done this in my life, time and time again.
Today, as I was reflecting back over these past six weeks, I was filled with gratitude to my God. It has not been easy, at all, but the Lord has been incredibly sweet and unfailingly kind to me. (Well, because, that’s Who He is, really!) In the process of prayer, and in writing, He has taught me, inspired me, challenged me, given me joy in the labor of it, and -most of all- humbled me. Today, I realized one more thing. God gave me a totally unexpected gift. I didn’t recognize it until the very end: He removed my last, personal “concern” about going back to school. Just like that! Poof!- I knew that I would survive college writing.
22The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail 23 They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. 24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.” 25 The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him. 26 It is good that he waits silently for the salvation of the Lord.
Please hear me when I say, anything at all that’s good in what I’ve written comes completely from the Holy Spirit. Any failures or weaknesses in any of it belong to me alone. God never fails, and it is impossible for Him to do so. It is humbling, and awe-inspired to be used by Him in any way. I want to leave you with the scriptures that helped me form my “yes” and then carried me through the experience of writing these devotions. I hope that they will help you believe that God is bigger than all of your fears and hesitations:
Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men...
This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and confident access through faith in Him.
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
...and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel...
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9
My prayer for all of us as we prepare to “return to normal life”, is that we will leave some things permanently behind, and refrain from getting re-entangled in civilian affairs (2 Tim. 2.4). Let us look to our beautiful risen Savior for everything! I wish you all the perfect Shalom of Jesus. Pray with me.
You are so good! Your love is better than life. Help me to proclaim Christ boldly before men! Help me to live for You, that in my weakness, You alone may be glorified. I want to serve You joyfully, faithfully, and well, with all that I am. I give You all the glory, honor, and praise, in the perfect Name of Jesus, King of Kings, and Lord of Lords!
For more encouragement, read, meditate, and pray on Philippians 2.