A few years ago, I was approached by one of the leaders of our church to become the mime/drama leader for the 3-6 year olds in our local church. A position of leadership…me, I asked myself? Now I was the most unlikely person for this job. I had no previous experience. I honestly didn’t know the first thing about it. I wouldn’t exactly describe myself as creative. I sure didn’t know sign language or have any capabilities regarding music interpretation. I have always lacked in the natural talent category.
Reluctance and fear of failure and admittedly fear of ridicule pressed hard on my mind. How could I possibly be the one for this ministry? Of all the talent literally bursting out from the seams of our church, why ask me? I know my reluctance shown forth despite my attempt to hide it. Not that I didn’t want to work for God, just that I was unworthy and more so than that, very unqualified.
I then recalled the many prayers of “use me, Lord” and the countless times I spoke the words, “I am a willing vessel.” I was willing in my heart, but the flesh was definitely on a different page. The carnal and the spiritual just don’t seem to see eye to eye. I wanted to be used for God’s service. It is definitely true what they say, the Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. I was allowing the carnal aspect to control the Spirit aspect. I was speaking the words “use me” and “I am willing” but what I was actually saying was “use me, but keep it within my comfort zone.” I was trying to place boundaries and limits on God. How dare I. Who in the world do I think I am? I had encouraged others throughout my Christian walk to embrace new things, step out in faith, and trust in the Lord. This of course was coming from the very one who was too intimidated to step out herself. I love when you have to swallow your own words and practice what you preach. Honestly, I believe that shows God’s sense of humor.
I battled back and forth for some time. Should I take the chance and accept this position? Could I actually step out into this unknown territory? I discouraged myself through criticism of my abilities. I was really having a hard time looking past my weaknesses and insecurities.
I prayed and asked God to help me. To show me, to guide me…then it happened. God reminded me of a book that I had read about doing God’s work afraid. How could I say I place my trust in God if I had never actually put faith in action? Sure I had faith for God to heal, deliver, and save but I had never really had to trust God in this area before. I was reminded of the scripture, with God, all things are possible.
In Judges, chapter 6, Gideon is chosen to lead his army to defeat the Midianites. Gideon was the least likely for the job. Judges 6:15-16 states “But Lord,” Gideon replied, “how can I rescue Israel? My clan is the weakest in the whole tribe of Manasseh, and I am the least in my entire family!” The Lord said to him, “I will be with you. And you will destroy the Midianites as if you were fighting against one man.” Gideon was reluctant to obey. He felt inadequate to do this mighty, courageous, and heroic task. This scripture proves that we can accomplish anything if God’s presence is with us, just as God did with Gideon.
I decided that I was going to accept this new challenge. If He was there for Gideon, He would be there for me. God has no respect of persons. I was going to do it whether I was afraid or not. I was going to work for God despite my many weaknesses and despite the fact of being terrified of the unknown. I was determined to put fear behind me and not let it control me and my service to the wonderful God that I serve.
I now have been the drama leader for about three years. There have been ups and downs and days I have felt like a huge failure, but I lean on God and He pulls me through time after time. I have learned so much from the beginning stages. Our team has grown, not just in number but in discipline, patience, cooperation, courage, and skill. We are constantly learning from one another. I am truly appreciative of God seeing the potential and not the weakness. I feel blessed beyond measure to be a part of His ministry.
It is amazing how God uses the ordinary, the insecure, the weak, the least likely individuals to work in service, to accomplish His will. I believe it is because these are the people who are solely trusting in God to provide, move, change, overcome, and give victory. In these experiences, God can be given full credit and acknowledgment. God can truly be given the glory.
Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT) Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.
So I encourage all of those Gideon’s out there to step out in to ministry. Put your trust in the almighty God. Move out of your comfort zone. If you truly are a willing vessel, don’t let fear in any form stop you. Just do it!
Cindie -- You've done a great job of telling what God did in you. Show'em. Give us a glimpse of your actual working with the little ones, a little exchange of some true dialog in a special moment you remember.