This Task was Appointed to You
Honestly, I’m not a writer by trade. I didn’t go to school for it. Actually, in college I studied the very opposite: science. This explains why I quote Bible verses in MLA or APA format. It may be incorrect, but oh well, I tried! Despite all of that, I still love to write and for years, I prayed and journaled. I spent hours writing letters to God, and He responded back in miraculous ways. I write during the best times, the okay times, and even the so-so times. I write to him when I’m emotionally devastated. Sometimes, I write as fast as I can, unleashing all the pain as it enters my heart and my thoughts. Often, I’m not sure if I can even read back through some entries because of my messy cursive scribble. Some pages have smudges from the tears, others have big bold words “STRENGTHEN ME! PLEASE HELP ME!”
Sometimes, my writings were about trials in my life that, although God put them in my path, I felt I was not prepared for. Whether it be a new job or position with more responsibility. An exam worth 25% of my entire grade. A new relationship to build or an old relationship to prune. Or any other task I felt I wasn’t ready for, haven’t prepared for, didn’t go to school for, or I haven’t studied for months for only to receive a rating of “competent” (not even the best, just competent). In almost every one of those times, I argued and stated my case, presenting all the reasons why this task shouldn’t be given to me (kind of reminds me
of Frodo not wanting to take the ring to Mordor.)
“This task was appointed to you. And if you do not find a way, no one will.” - Galadriel, the Lady of the Woods. Although that quote isn’t Biblical, you get the point.
You may have similar feelings about being called to difficult situations, but isn’t that the way God shows how amazing he is? Whenever we’re at our lowest point with no logical way out, God shows his true sovereignty, creativity, and intelligence. Initially, our shortcomings show how far below the ‘competent’ line we are and expose what we can’t reason our way out of. David was smaller than Goliath. Jonah was swallowed by a fish. Luke studied to be a doctor. Moses was not a natural leader. Paul was a murderer. Ester was a Jewish orphan. The Israelites had the laws of physics standing in their way as they stood in front of the Red Sea. You may be dealing with an illness, violent relationship, physical disability, or unforeseen circumstances and those are the times when doubt can settle in the hardest. When we think we’re stuck in these places, that is when we start to see our short comings and question our own ability.
1 Corinthians 1:26-31 “Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things-and the things that are not-to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God-that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: ‘Let the one who boasts boast in the LORD.’"
Now, some of those titles seem discouraging: not wise, not influential, not noble birth. However, there is one word that can give you some encouragement: were. Past tense. “We started from the bottom now we’re here!” (Drake). We’re no longer unwise or lack influence with Christ Jesus. He particularly chose us with all our weaknesses and flaws to become the very instruments used to promote his glory. You were chosen to radically change not only our own lives, but the lives of others. Praise God that we’re no longer stuck in our day-to-day lives when we have chosen salvation by the grace of God. Think of how amazing he made us when weren’t even asking. Now that we are praying, think of all the more he can do with us. He chose us to be with Christ Jesus. Nothing by our own, but only through Jesus.
When we fully trust God and choose to live by his plan, he always seems to have some last-minute changes to our plans or new doors opening that deliver a twist ending we could never feel ready for. He didn’t choose the perfect superhero to save the day. Nor the eloquent, charismatic speaker to save the Israelites. God makes no mistakes. He did not make a mistake choosing you to do this task. You CAN invite your co-worker to church. You CAN move to that new city. You CAN start that Bible study. You CAN start that blog.
Whatever reason God does what he does, He is in the business to amaze. Just after Jesus healed the invalid in John 5:1-15, the Bible states “For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, and he will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be amazed”(John 5:20 emphasis by me). How amazing! Jesus could have given many other reasons, but he chose to say “so that you will be amazed.” The top of Zugspitz mountain in Germany is amazing. The Tyrrhenian sea in the morning is amazing. The jobs of cells is amazing. The work God does for us is amazing!
God is in the business of making miracles happen. How amazing God is! How transforming he is. The entire Bible is filled with stories of people least qualified for the job that were transformed into amazing people. They changed not by their own works, but only with God’s favor were they able to become miraculous people. David killed Goliath. Jonah survived and went to Nineveh. Luke wrote a gospel. Moses led God’s people out of Egypt. Paul encountered Jesus and wrote most of the New Testament. Ester became queen and saved the Jews. The Israelites crossed the Red Sea. I am writing this letter. You are overcoming an obstacle. The number one underlying factor for these miraculous journeys is God. We are the perfect blank canvas for God to create something miraculous.
So do not give up, my friend. When it seems the odds are against you. When you can’t think of any way out of this situation. When there is nothing changing. When the seeds you planted in people aren’t blooming. When plans you prepared aren’t working out. When all the doors are being closed and the windows are nailed shut. When everyone points out a flaw in your plans. When you’re constantly told that you’re not enough. The good news with all of those things is that the chances of a miracle happening have greatly increased.
Galatians 6:9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
God Sees Your Humbled Hearts
When we are desperate, our motives can be warped. As much as we wish we did, we don’t have the magic formula to make miracles happen. Everything is God’s will, and only he knows what he will do in your life. But we can look in the Bible and see the hearts of man and God’s responses. A common stage for a miracle is when there’s a major humbling event or circumstances that we can’t get out of on our own and you CHOOSE to humble yourselves and pray with the right motives. Ask yourself, what is your motive? Fame, money, or self promoting is not a good motive. This is something you can’t reason out of because God sees your true motives within your heart.
James 4:10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
1 Timothy 1: 5 The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.
When we’re smack dab in the middle of a season of trial, that’s when we’re the weakest. God allows those things to come, just like Paul and his thorn (2 Corinthians 12: 1-10), so you can see God’s strength and sovereignty at work. Jesus’s strength is joined with all your weaknesses so you can learn to understand that his grace is sufficient and is all you need to continue through the seasons of trial.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 “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. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Remember These for Motivation!
James 1:4 “Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete.”
It’s not comfortable to be in a new, humbled season yet still persevere. Persevere, my friend, through trials in school, your job, your marriage, your family. For me, I needed to persevere through this making website. I had to push through the negative thoughts and fears. When doubt creeps in, it can fool you to believe that you are an unworthy being. Do not wallow in a belief that isn’t true. You were meant for greater things: shamelessness (Psalm 34:5), joy (John 16:22), and strength (2 Tim 1:7). God knows that. Even Satan knows that, and he is trying every trick in the book to convince you it’s not true. So let me remind you:
1. God gave you this desire!
Psalm 37:4 “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
Psalm 37:4 can be mistakenly interpreted as if God is a genie, bent on granting your every wish. That’s not the case. God has the power to change one’s goals and ambitions. When I graduated college, I never had the ambition to do anything else than the job I was trained to do, but here I am now. Look at the people in the Bible. Just like when Paul was murdering Christians, Jesus transformed him into an apostle of Christ. Pray fervently and ask Jesus to work in your lives. Jesus can change your perspective and make any situation into something miraculous.
2. God equipped you!
Luke 9:1-2 “When Jesus had called the Twelve together, he gave them power and authority to drive out all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.”
The order of Jesus’ actions are important to notice here. First, he called. Then he gave. Then he sent them out. Jesus will call you to do a task that he knows you alone are not equipped for. So does he go and look for someone else who can do it? No, he gives you all you need to fulfill the task. Whether it be wisdom with the Holy Spirit or minas (Luke 19:11-27), Jesus will equip you with the tools you need to perform the task he’s called you to. Then he will send you out. When Jesus sends you out, he doesn’t plan for you to come back empty-handed. If at first something doesn’t work out, it doesn’t mean that God’s hands aren’t at work. The results you receive maybe not what you anticipated, but look out for God’s reasoning.
3. For God’s glory
1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
Isaiah 43:7 “Everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.”
To many, it may seem weird to do everything not for themselves but for God. But he deserves it. He is everything. He is our Savior. He is our Shepard. The Prince of Peace. Our advocate against our deserved eternal damnation. He is not evil or selfish. With all his glory, he is generous and loving. He is not of this world, so don’t compare him to worldly prideful celebrities or millionaires. God’s goal for our lives isn’t for us to be stress-free and have everything we want. It is all for his glory! Our blessings we hare are the result of having a glorious, generous God.
4. The Great Commission
Matthew 28:18-20 “Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always to the very end of the age.’”
This is Jesus’ very last statement before he died on the cross was the Great Commission. It’s not an ‘if’, but a ‘when’ will you be placed in situations where you can choose to continue out Jesus’ command. I personally know this because I started going to church only when a friend invited me after just moving to a new city and getting a new job and now here we are. Your task is bigger than to simply better yourself or make it through this trial. Your task is to help others and continue the work of Jesus. Go, Frodo.
John 14:12 “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.”
5. Look at past miracles
Don’t be blind like the complaining and grumbling Israelites wishing to die by the hands of the Egyptians rather than the desert (Exodus 16:3). God has performed miracles in your life. Trace backwards your journey through life and see all of God’s fingerprints displaying his work. Even though your miracles probably didn’t involve the splitting of the Red Sea, they may be even greater. I’m glad to have my journals to read back and see the miraculous answers God has given me or the things he’s allowed me to avoid. Looking back reminds me of the amazing power of God even though during those tough times it may not have seemed like he was working. Looking back allows us to see that even though times were hard, we made it through and it resulted in a strengthening of our character.
6. Wait patiently for Jesus to amaze!
Ephesians 3:20 “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”
We have no idea what God has in store for us no matter how much we try to plan things. If your life is exactly how you planned, that’s amazing, and you are blessed! For the majority of us, however, that’s not the case. Even the plans I had for this morning aren’t turning out the way I planned. We can’t fathom what he will do to AMAZE us! How awesome is that fact alone! Just because something ends up differently than you imagined doesn’t make it bad, it just shows how much greater God’s plans are than yours!
Don’t be fooled into believing that God only has one big blessing planned out for you in your life, instead, pray that he will show you all the other blessings you may not see daily, even the small ones. He longs to be gracious to you.
Isaiah 30:18 “Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore he will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him!”
7. Do not be afraid!
In the entire Bible, Jesus says some version of “do not be afraid” over 300 times. Having fear of anything, other than a righteous and respectful fear of God, is not from God.
2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
So if God didn’t give us that fear, then when were did it come from? Satan loves to use fear to cripple you and stop you from doing good. If we’re afraid of trying something new, we might convince ourselves not to try it and stop Jesus from using us for his plan. We can have an endless list of reasons why we should do the will of God, but just a little fear can be the only reason we need to convince us why we shouldn’t. Don’t quit. My husband had to tell me this: “Satan makes you afraid, because when you’re afraid, you are less effective in spreading God’s word and displaying his glory.” The feeling of fear will stir within you but you can choose to live fearfully or live courageously.
8. Pray, Pray, Pray!
You must pray! You cannot do anything on your own! Even Jesus, God in the flesh, prayed fervently to the Father all the time. If Jesus needed to pray, then you know you got to! Don’t only ask but also praise him for what he’s already blessed you with. He loves you so much and wants to have a strong everlasting relationship with you. Pray to him. You can read all the self-help books and build as many dream boards as you want, but unless you pray, not only will the chances of miracles decrease, but you might lose out on something very valuable and important that Jesus is trying to show you.
John 14:13-14 “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”
James 4:2-3 “You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.”
It starts with the decision to say yes to Jesus’ call, but with that, the journey has just begun. If you want to be healthier, be a better mom, be a hard worker, strengthen your relationship with God, strive for your dream, or be a Psalm 31 wife, it will take constant refining. Even though it may seem overwhelming, because we want things to be done instantly and only done once, Jesus is with us through every step, every u-turn, and every break down.
God’s will stays the same and your options are simple: disobey and deny that God has come and placed in my heart a desire or continue to go and do his will. Friend, continue to walk through the valley to see God’s blessings in the end, even though at the moment it doesn’t feel like they’ll be there. Maybe you’re thinking, “Sure Reena, this advice works for you, but my life is different.” Yes, the scenario may be different, but God is the same. He’s the same God who made the universe, the same Jesus who chose his twelve disciples in the 1st century, and who chose you to be a disciple in the 21st century. There’s nothing you’re going through that Jesus isn’t prepared for. He’s so ready for you that he planned to make his Word for you before time began for this very moment.
Starting this website was difficult for me. I was concerned about the opinions of my family, friends, ex-coworkers, and new friends. I was also worried because I’m certainly not a pro at building a website. We tend to have the mindset that as soon as we step outside of the box, we should be rewarded. And mostly we are, just not always in the way we want to be. We want instant recognition and instant success. But the truth is, if we really want to produce fruit, we have to not only step out of the box, we have to stay out of the box. We have to constantly fight the fear Satan places in us when he’s trying to put us back in that box. I pray that after all your life’s dust has settled and issues are resolved, God says to you “Well done, my good servant. Because you have been trustworthy in a very small matter, take charge of ten cities” (Luke 19:17).
You can do it, friend! In this moment, you can’t see the outcome of what you’re going through, but Jesus knows. Accept his call and wait in amazement to see what miracles God has in store for you. After all, God’s in the business of amazement, so step back and be amazed.