I Can’t

5 02 2014

We live in an “I can” society. Everything is measured by what we can do. The more we can do, the more valuable the world says that we are. There is enormous pressure to not let your “can’ts” show. We become adept at hiding our “can’ts” because we fear what others will say when they find out the truth. Our world makes it clear that it doesn’t have any place for those with more can’ts than cans.

Here is the truth. I can’t. And that is okay. Learning to say those words opens the door to freedom. I can’t be strong enough. I can’t do enough. I can’t know enough. I can’t be good enough. Faith is built on the reality that I can’t, but God can. If I never learn to say “I can’t,” then there is no room in my life for all the God cans.

Paul spoke about the grace that is found in learning to say “I can’t” in 2 Corinthians 12:9. “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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” Sometimes our I can’ts are the best framework for God’s I cans.

My Jesus Resolution today is to admit I can’t. It is hard to say. I like the façade of having it all together, knowing all the answers, and being able to do it on my own. But “I can” can hide me from the beauty of grace. It takes humility to admit that I am broken, weak, and not able to do it myself. But every time I can say “I can’t,” God’s love envelopes me and whispers, “I can.”

By the Will of God

3 02 2014

What has God called you to do?

I have been spending time in the book of Colossians. The beginnings of the epistles rarely get much of our notice. They are the prologue that we skim through in order to get to the meat of the letter. But within these opening words, there is great truth and places for us to stop and reflect on God’s call on our lives.

Colossians begins with this statement. “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,” (Colossians 1:1). Paul serves as an apostle by the will of God. Bearing the message of Christ to the Gentiles is what God called Paul to do. How would you fill in the blanks in that sentence? _______________ (insert your name), a ___________________ (what do you do for Jesus?) by the will of God. How you complete that sentence is important. Understanding that we walk in the purpose and will of God gives our days definition and direction.

Are you a mom? Love your kids knowing that God has given them to you for His glory. Are you a teacher, a nurse, an accountant, or an executive? Do your job with the understanding that God has put you in that place in order to shine as a light for Him. Do you teach Bible class, rock babies, make casseroles, or send cards? Walk into each one of those moments knowing God’s hand guides you as you serve Him.

My Jesus Resolution today is to frame my identity within the will of God. God has opened doors of opportunity for me to serve Him. The particulars don’t matter nearly as much as my understanding that God is working in me and through me to accomplish His purpose. When I can hold onto the truth that my family, my job, my service, and my friendships all hold the potential to reflect Jesus, it changes how I see the little things that define my days. Each task, each conversation, each item on my to-do list becomes a moment in which I can see God and others can see Him in me.