Saturday, June 10, 2006

Small beginnings

Over the past few days, I have seen God's hand moving in this ministry. Daily He's been bringing "news" into my life... new friends, new knitters who want to help, new opportunities to encourage women who have been sexually assaulted, new opportunities to tell others about the vision for this ministry, new ideas for fundraising and getting the word out.

Now that things are finally coming together and the initial seeds planted for this ministry are starting to bear beautiful fruit, I find myself feeling small, overwhelmed and a bit scared. I find myself asking God "Why?", "Why me?", "How?", "How big?", "Where?"... the list goes on. I look at others who are much more articulate, extroverted, and more spiritually mature than I , and I wonder why God chose me to do this.

I may never know why God chose me for this work, but I do know that it would be a huge mistake for me to allow my fears and insecurities keep me from being obedient on this. Just in the past 3 days, I've been reminded twice that God can and does use anybody, and that includes me.

First, I finally opened a book that I was led to buy about a month ago called "Twelve Extraordinary Women" (of the Bible) by John MacArthur. He notes that like Jesus' disciples, most of the extraorindary women of the Bible were in and of themselves unremarkable. He reminds us that they were "ordinary, common, and in some cases shockingly low-caste women - in exactly the same way the disciples were commen men." He uses the examples of the Samaritan woman of John 4 whose name we don't even know, Rahab who was a common "harlot" (I'm glad we don't use that word much anymore!), and even Mary, the mother of Christ, who was an ordinary young girl who became quite extraordinary. The significant thing about all these women was that they all served an awesome, almighty God, and it was only through their faith, love and obedience, and by God's grace, power and mercy that these women were able to accomplish great things for His glory.

Then today, I found a daily inspirational message in my e-mail box from Inspiration Network, titled Small Beginnings. It talks about Champollion, a very average young man born in a small town in southern France in the late 1700's. Although his live had a small beginning, his passion for foreign languages eventually led him to decipher the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs!

The message went on to say that:

Many people see their lives as small and insignificant. As a result, they put a cap on their God-given abilities, assuming it would be impossible to achieve great things for Him. They feel incapable of witnessing to others, praying for the sick, undertaking great crusades, stepping out in faith on important assignments. And they don’t feel worthy to experience more of His blessings, wisdom, riches, and power. But God wants us to realize that His blessings are available to all of us. And He wants us to understand that He can use anyone—even if they experience small beginnings.

Today, do not place limits on what God can do in you and through you. Don’t allow your heart to be filled with worry and doubt, but believe His Word and trust Him. Proclaim His promises, and be ready to step out in faith.

Today I pray that each one of us remembers that God knows what He's doing, even when we don't (which is most of the time). I pray that we realize that He has designed each of us with a specific purpose in mind and that our heart's desire will be to understand what God is calling us to do, And that then, through faith, prayer and obedience, we will step up to the plate and answer His call, knowing that through Him, all things are possible. Amen.

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