I am unqualified—He is not
I don’t know about you guys, but I frequently feel as though I am not qualified to be in the position I am in. And I am not just talking about the position I have here at camp. I often feel unqualified to have the friendships I have, to lead bible studies, to teach Sunday school classes, and even just a natural feeling of being unprepared and unqualified for daily activities. I am not the kind of person who plans things in advance and that is probably the root of this mindset. Luckily for me, I have a heavenly Father who knows and cares for me so much that He chooses to use me regardless of all my inabilities. It is my hope that people see Him in what I do and understand that if it were not for His more than capable abilities working through me, I would not get much of anything done. Surely some of you feel the same as I do, and if you are one of those people there is good news! 1 Corinthians 1:27-29 tells us “But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God” ESV.
It blows my mind to think about how true those verses are in my life. You can ask anyone who knows me well if a majority of my life is made up of me doing foolish things that somehow work out properly and they will tell you that is true. I am also, aside from being pretty weak physically, a generally weak mentally and emotionally person as well. So it is mind bottling that God uses me to teach others, encourage others, and lead others. It is solely because of the guidance of the Spirit that any of those things are possible. In regards to being low and despised, I did not come from the lowest of poverty stricken or socially influential families, but things were not always peachy. It was never a guarantee that I would become the man I am, and I can confidently say that I would not be where I am today if it were not for the endless grace and mercy of God transforming me from nothing into something for the glory of His kingdom.
I am still severely lacking in most facets of my life, but God is not done working on and in my life. I am reminded of the old (to me) church song “He’s still working on me”. I can daily see the ways He is continually investing and working in my life. If I had to pick a saying that embodied my life it would be “God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called”. No matter what phase of life you are in, you do not have everything together. We never do, and doubtfully ever will. Our God doesn’t wait for us to be perfectly prepared before He calls us into action because then we would think that we had something to do with our success. The reality is that we are never fully prepared for what God has planned for us, but He is and we can take comfort in that. Please remember that our inabilities are unimportant to God. He is concerned with our willingness to be obedient when He calls and our trust in Him to qualify us for what is to come.
Even though we are unqualified—He is not!
What Does The Great Commission Mean For You?
Recap of Part One:
In the last post we started to look into what the Great Commission means for us personally. We have all been tasked, as believers, to fulfill the Great Commission which is found in Matthew 28:16-20. We talked about what our Jerusalem and Judea look like. Jerusalem for us should our immediate relationships i.e. family and long-term friendships (BFF’s). Judea for us is the next ring in our sphere of influence i.e. coworkers, teammates, and neighbors. Today we will talk about our Samaria and end of the earth.
What is your Samaria? This would be the next ring in our sphere of influence. It would consist of those people that we have to go out to interact with while still staying in close relation geographically to our home or Jerusalem. A simple way to think of what our Samaria would be is to think about it as the state, or even country, you live. Take a college student for example, they have the perfect Samaria on their campus that they go to everyday. Those campuses are a melting pot of students that come together from all over the state or even the country. As a college student your campus would be blend of both your Judea and Samaria. What about those of you who are not yet in college or maybe have college already in the rearview mirror of your life? Lets start with those not yet in college. For you Samaria would be all the places you get to visit through traveling for sports teams or clubs that you are a part of. Now for those of you who are already professionals within your desired occupational fields. For you Samaria would be the partnerships you make while at a conference, or on a business trip. It is our job to prioritize sharing our faith regardless of which phase of life we are going through. The next time you are in an unfamiliar location because of school, sports, or work make sure you remember that your witness is just as powerful in those times because you are pointing people to the feet of Christ!
What is your end of the earth? This one is a little tricky to nail down. We could go the obvious route and say that it is solely the mission field in regards to you going to another country. While that mentality is very much so included in what was meant by the end of the earth, some people may never have the opportunity to travel to a different country for a mission trip. With that being sad I think that the end of earth will look unique for each of us. If you get the chance to travel overseas and share the gospel I highly recommend you do so! It is a surreal experience that will change your life and would fulfill the end of the earth category. However, for those of you who never get that opportunity your end of the earth would look a little more intimate. For you it would be finding the courage to share your faith with those people that you thought you never would—not even if the world was ending. It could be a family member that is dead set in not believing, someone you feel so negatively towards that you would never share your faith with, or maybe that group of friends of that you are afraid to share with because you think they will start to judge you and end up with you being rejected from the group. No matter which of these is a more apt description of what your end of the earth looks like, we are expected to dig deep and find our courage in Christ to boldly proclaim His name and what He has done for us!
Nowhere in the Great Commission will you find an order in which you are supposed to approach these four areas of your life. That is why we must follow what it says in 1 Peter 3:15 “but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect”. Are you prepared??