I recently heard someone say that their way of discerning when God was speaking in their life was based on the perceived difficulty of what was being asked. If it was something difficult, they rationalized God must not be asking that, for God would only ask them to do something they are fully equipped for. Therefore, when they feel led to do something easy they do it, but when it is something difficult they do not. When putting serving God that way, we may well quickly shake our head in dismay at this individual. However, I believe many of us think this way, even if we may not openly admit it. When difficult opportunities arise in our lives we may think “certainly there is someone else better able to do that than me.” However, is that really how God works? Does God really only call the qualified, or is He also in the business of qualifying the called?
One of the best illustrations of this can be found in Matthew 14.
And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” Matthew 14:29-33
Peter was in no way qualified to walk on water. Yet, because Jesus commanded and empowered Him to, he was able to do so successfully. The reality is that the Bible is chocked full of examples of God qualifying the unqualified to do amazing things. Seldom does God simply call those who have every necessary skill. Rather, over and over we see God equipping those who open their hearts to serving Him. What is often most needed to effectively serve God is not a specific ability, but faith. The faith to trust God to use us. After 13 years in ministry, I can honestly tell you that one of the chief problems in churches is an unwillingness to step out of the boat and onto the water. We are all skilled at constructing a mountain of excuses for why we are unqualified to serve. Yet, God wants to equip us to serve. We need to have faith in Him.
How is God calling you to serve? I’m not talking only of “big things” like your career, a mission trip, leading a program at church, etc. I’m also talking about daily things like loving your spouse, sharing Christ with your neighbor, living with Christian character, etc. Stop making excuses for why you can’t be who God has called you to be, and start having faith that God can, and will, use you. You cannot be who God has made you to be unless you step out of the boat and entrust Him to fully use you. What are you waiting for?