“Are you willing? Are you willing to be made willing?”
Odd questions. But they keep popping up this week, in various forms. Are you willing to change? Are you willing to commit? Are you willing to try … (fill in the blank)?
My church has started a new small group, First Place 4 Health, and for whatever reason, without knowing the details, I jumped in with both feet and told my friend I’d help her facilitate the group! WHY? I don’t stick to diets, and I’m not terribly disciplined. But, as I have been reading over the member’s materials, leader’s gude and my Bible, “Are you willing?” keeps coming up again and again.
I think about two Old Testament figures. Samuel was a child of promise, given back to God by his mother in thanksgiving for God’s faithfulness. At that time in Israel, the voice of God was rarely heard. But one night Samuel heard his name — “Samuel.” He went to the priest, but he hadn’t called Samuel. Three times – Finally the priest (who should have recognized the voice of God the first time, one would think) realized that it WAS God calling Samuel and told him. The next time, Samuel said “Here I am.”
Then there was Isaiah. An amazing prophet of God. In a vision, he saw the glory of God on His throne, and heard God mourn, “whom shall I send?” Isaiah jumped in with both his feet and said, “Here I am. Send me!” Wow.
Neither man knew what came next. They just said, Here I am! What a hard thing to do for us humans sometimes. But, when we do, amazing things can happen. In Mary Kay, I heard my director and my National say more than once, “You have to show up to go up.” You have to do the work. You have to make your self available. You have to be willing.
As I read and prepare for this new role, I’m terrified! Well, maybe not terrified, but certainly WELL out of my comfort zone. The key, I am finding, is to take one step at a time, and as anxiety or fear creeps in, to say, “Lord, Here I am – Send me. Use me to do what YOU want done. Give me Your peace, wisdom and grace. Teach me to trust You for every step, and place Jesus as the center of my life and work.” There is no way I can change without the power of God, so I’d better learn to lean on Him! Quickly!
Am I willing? You betcha. Am I nervous? Without a doubt. Am I willing to let God lead me where He wants? Lord, make me willing to be made willing in this every day!
“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple.” Isaiah 6:1