It’s important to consider / take an inventory of the thoughts that we allow to run around in our minds. Such thoughts can have a significant impact on our decisions & behaviors. For example, there have been many occassions where I’ve been in situations that were way beyond my skill set & I was in way over my head (sometimes in various leadership roles, sometimes in athletic competitions & often in my role as a mom). There have also been situations where I’ve felt entirely confident, secure & proficient, to the point of being over-confident, cocky & even arrogant.
What we think in our minds is extremely important & I was reminded of this lesson from reading about the woman with the issue of blood in Matthew 9:21. In this verse it says, “. . . . ‘she said in herself, if I can touch the hem of His garment, I will be healed.'” The outcome of the story is that she was healed, but her mindset was an important ingredient for her healing. Some take aways from her internal conversation:
keep your eyes on Jesus more than fear, inabilty or even talent
I love the story about how Peter walked on the water to Jesus, nevermind that he almost sank because Peter walked on water, unaided, more than any human in all history. Eleven of Jesus’ followers stayed in the boat at the same time that Peter walked on the water in the middle of a storm. Here are a few things to consider about walking on water:
in order to get out of the boat, Peter needed his fellow disciples to hold the boat steady – let’s hold the boat for the people in our lives who are trying to do the impossible (rather than taking cheap shots & shouting out disparaging & discouraging remarks from the sidelines).
keep Jesus front & center: life has enough waves, winds, storms, setbacks & discouragements to make us sink & even tell us not to try & walk on the water; stay on target
if you want to walk with Jesus, being as close as possible, sometimes you have to get out of the boat (what’s known, safe, familiar & comfortable); do what you’ve never done to get what you’ve never had
walking is something very common & mundane; walking on water is miraculous, combining the mundane with the miraculous is exactly Who Jesus is – the incarnate God; consider that at some point in your walk with God, you’ll have to get out of the boat & take a stroll ,)
It’s my sincere belief that most of us under perform the potential God has put in us. I think we can often settle for mediocre & half hearted for various reasons (lack of effort or commitment, insecurity, unfocused / distractions, unteachable, etc). Here are some helpful thoughts about God’s potential becoming a reality in our lives:
*be teachable – learn from situations & wise people; arrogance will sabotage your potential
*improve – make the commitment to consistently improve, even if it’s only a little bit at a time
*faith in God – believing in ourselves is inherently limiting as opposed to believing in God; make the decision to always say “yes” to God without fail
*encourage others to pursue God’s potential in their lives 🙂
I was thinking about the time when Peter walked on the water & Jesus rescued him from drowning. That must have been a totally amazing trek. Can you imagine how Peter felt when he was getting ready to step out of the boat? Excited, nervous, scared, jittery, lots of adrenaline, . . . . . Peter did something impossible, illogical, stressful, successful & epic when he walked on the water. Even though Peter did something amazing, I think that perhaps there may have been some stress & jitters running around in his mind – some quick conversations about doing something impossible & then he just did it.
Lets be careful not to talk ourselves out of Gods miracles just because there’s some stress & jitters that go along with these impossibilities 🙂
I was recently reading about Abraham & I was pleasantly surpised to notice that when the angel spoke to Abraham about having a son in his old age, he literally fell to the ground laughing!! And when Sarah heard that she would carry a baby in her very old age, she also busted out laughing! Both parents had a good laugh at what seemed totally impossible, but what was also probably the biggest desire in their lives. Perhaps they had been disappointed when year after year, Sarah never became pregnant until it seemed to be too late. Maybe the only reply that they had left to their decades of disappointment was to laugh at what seemed to be absurd.
Nevertheless, God is faithful to His promises even when they seem impossible & Sarah became pregnant. Its completely funny to recognize that God’s name for their son was Isaac, which means laughter . The decades of disappointment had been replaced with laughter for everyone. Please be encouraged that God is faithful to His promises even when they seem impossible. Maybe one day, you’ll look at the impossible & laugh with faith, knowing that nothing is impossible with God.
Sometimes it seems like my life is filled with impossibilities – things I want to accomplish, but they seem almost stupid to consider because of the difficulties associated with these things. One of these things is my dream with Saving Moses to see Night Care become a multiplied reality throughout all of Asia (Night care is the care & oversight for infants & toddlers during the evening hours while their moms are working in prostitution. On this topic, please do not judge the importance of this project, based on the profession of these moms). Nevertheless, many of these dreams & goals seem more than lofty – they seem impossible, when I only look at them.
However, when I look at these dreams in the context of my loving Heavenly Father, I sometimes feel like my dreams are too small, based on the immensity of my Father. So in this conundrum, I find myself taking one day at a time, making a little progress here & there, but knowing in my heart that no dream is impossible with God, including yours!!