Check yourself (before you wreck yourself)
It’s been awhile since I’ve posted on here something that wasn’t an interview. It’s been a bit of an up and down time, and I don’t know about y’all – but when its like that, I tend to plug myself into other/lighter/non-self reflective things. But God is good (that just needs to be said, always, to remind us how great He is).
Anyways, last sunday my awesome wife and I were listening to this older Francis Chan sermon and a particular chunk of it really walloped me ( or like a grace filled basketball to the face, as my boy Cameron Butryn would put it). I’d recommend listening to the whole thing anyway, but the proverbial b-ball to face is in the first 10-15mins.
My main take away (for the purpose of this post anyway) was something that I needed to be reminded of; that God doesn’t NEED me, and He doesn’t NEED me to advance the kingdom. I am NOT the clincher; We are not the clincher here, none of us are. God wants us, but doesn’t need us. He doesn’t need me to save anybody, but He can use me – and have plans for me. Nothing I can do can screw up God’s plan. Nothing I can do can ruin Him. Sure, I can misrepresent Him to others and I can point away from Him, but God can still save those people, and correct me.
After I left PYC, and in the frustration of this period of waiting and searching for a new ministry position, my attitude at times can be summed up perfectly by this Doctor Who
“But me? I could do so much more! SO MUCH MORE!”
And I could – if God chooses to use me for it. On my own? Not so much.
On my own strength, I can’t do anything for the kingdom. On my own strength, PYC and any of the ministries I was leading at Calvary didn’t advance an inch during my tenure there – but God was active through me, and I definitely think there was ground gained and gospel shared. The truth is God doesn’t need me or my strength to advance the kingdom. But He used me and the volunteers to do just that, and on His strength we shared Him with the kids/volunteers/clients every week, we grew to know them more than before, and hopefully left a lasting impression/planted a seed.
There’s a comforting notion here in that we can’t do anything on our own strength, at least to me. And please, don’t get it twisted – I’m not saying we don’t do anything; on the contrary, we should do all that we are able to. But we/I need to keep in mind that it’s not me (or Jessica or Arron or Xander) who wins someone to Christ, but Christ using us to win others to Him.
This doesn’t give us license to be lazy in our walk, but it does take the pressure and (more often than I’d like to admit) the inflated sense of self off. (maybe that second part is more for me than you). We are not the clincher, that’s Jesus. To piggyback off of Cam’s sports analogies: Jesus the all star player, and we’re the ball He’s using to win the game. Without Him directing and using, we just bounce up and down and make the occasional funny noise.
Thanks for reading. I hope and pray this was helpful.
God bless my friends.