God Is Going To Use You To Do Great Things

God is going to use you to do great things.

For some, it will mean writing a bestselling book that changes the lives of people all over the world. For some, it will mean writing songs that will be used in churches every Sunday and leading sold-out crowds in inspiring times of worship. For some, it will mean leading a mega-church where you preach to thousands of people each week and see countless people saved in response to your messages.

For some, but not for most.

Since nearly every Christian has at some point been told or has told someone else “God is going to use you to do great things,” why is it that we so often feel discouraged, disappointed, or like our lives are just so…normal? Why do we feel like the ways God uses us are so average and unimpressive? Our typical response is to tell ourselves and others who feel this way that this is just a time of preparation – God is preparing and equipping you so that when the time comes, you will be ready and able to do the great things he has for you to do.

But what if that time never comes? What if you go through your whole life and never feel like you have done anything great for God? What does it say about us that the things we view as great are typically the things that bring fame to our name? The truth is, most of us will never reach thousands of people at a time through a book we write, song we sing, or message we preach. Most of us will never seem anything more than normal, average, and unimpressive, but it’s often in the normal, average, and unimpressive that God is using us to do great things.

Those times you sang Jesus Loves Me to your son or daughter at bedtime – that was God using you to do something great.

The Sunday School class that you taught for a couple of weeks or many years – that was God using you to do something great.

The dinner you made for the family who just lost a loved one – that was God using you to do something great.

The encouraging words you spoke to a co-worker who was having a rough day – that was God using you to do something great.

The example that you set for your kids that caused them to want to follow Jesus – that was God using you to do something great.

That note you wrote to your pastor, thanking him for the time, energy, and passion that he gives week-in and week-out – that was God using you to do something great.

The diapers you changed and babies you rocked – that was God using you to do something great.

The money you gave and prayers you prayed for missionaries around the world – that was God using you to do something great.

The times you forgave people who hurt you – that was God using you to do something great.

The years you spent working jobs you hated in order to provide for your family – that was God using you to do something great.

The mornings you spent opening the door for people and welcoming them to church – that was God using you to do something great.

The hug that you gave someone who was going through a difficult time and wondered if anyone cared – that was God using you to do something great.

The legacy you leave that causes generation after generation of your family to follow Christ – that was God using you to do something great.

The great things are in the little things. The normal, average, and unimpressive things you do that bring glory to God and build others up – that was God using you to do something great.

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It Will Never Be Enough

You know that voice in your head?

The voice that says you are not good enough.
The voice that makes you feel guilty for not praying enough.
The voice that makes you feel bad for not reading the Bible enough.
The voice that tells you that no matter what you do, it will never be enough.
The Voice is right.

No matter what you do, it will never be enough.
No matter how much you read your Bible, it will never be enough.
No matter how much you pray, it will never be enough.
No matter how good you are, you will never be good enough.
The Voice is right.

You need to do more good works if you want to be sure that you’re saved.
You need to pray more if you want to be sure that you’re saved.
You need to read your Bible more if you want to be sure that you’re saved.
You need to try harder if you want to be sure that you’re saved.
The Voice is wrong.

The Voice is telling you the truth and telling you lies at the same time.
The Voice doesn’t care if you do more, pray more, read your Bible more, or try harder.
The Voice just wants to take your focus off what saves you.

Your good works don’t save you.
Your prayers don’t save you.
Your Bible studies don’t save you.
Your best efforts don’t save you.

God’s grace, through faith in Jesus, is the only thing that saves you.

When Jesus defeated sin and death, He defeated the Voice.
Don’t believe the lies the Voice tells you.

Keep trying, but remember that no amount of effort is enough to save you.
Keep reading, but remember that no amount of reading is enough to save you.
Keep praying, but remember that no amount of prayer is enough to save you.
Keep doing good, but remember that no amount of good works is enough to save you.

Whatever you do, never lose faith…

Faith Will Always Be Enough.

Possibilities & Potential

Is there anything that has more potential than a blank sheet of paper?

Before a crease is ever folded, before a line is ever drawn, before a letter is ever written…there is no limit to what a blank sheet of paper can be used for.

The same sheet of paper that an artist’s masterpiece is drawn on could have just as easily been used as makeshift toilet paper.  The same sheet of paper that was made into beautiful origami could have just as easily been made into a paper football.  The same sheet of paper that contains the words of Christ could just as easily have been used for Hitler’s to-do list.

Every sheet of paper starts out as a blank canvas that can be used to convey whatever message a person wants.  The difference between books, art, and anything else has nothing to do with the piece of paper.  It has everything to do with the person holding the pen.  With every stroke of the pen the message becomes more clear.  Where once there were limitless possibilities, there is now a distinct message being formed.  With each word, phrase, sentence, and paragraph that is written the message becomes more clear and focused.  The blank sheet of paper that was once so clean and new, so full of possibilities and potential, gradually watches that newness and potential fade away as it is consumed by the ink of the pen and the words of the author.  When the pen is finally laid down, there is no more potential…there is only the message that is conveyed by the way the ink was placed on the paper.

What’s true of paper is true of life as well.  Every day is a blank sheet of paper in the notebook of our life.  When we first wake up in the morning, our day has unlimited potential.  We can send whatever message we desire with the decisions that we make and the actions that we take.  Our decisions, words, and actions define the message that we send each day.  At the end of the day, if you don’t like what was was written on the page, don’t blame it on other people or circumstances.  You are the one putting pen to paper.  If there is a page in your life that you are not happy with, consider it a rough draft and start over the next day.  We all have days where the ink skips and smudges.  We all have days where we are unable to get across the message that we want.  We all have days where we would like nothing more than to rip that page out, tear it to shreds, light it on fire, and flush it down the toilet.  Unfortunately, that is not an option.  What’s done is done.  Don’t obsess over things in the past.  Focus on the present and look forward to the future.  After all, tomorrow is a blank page with unlimited potential.

I Found Jesus In The Bathroom At Work

This is in our bathroom at work, right in front of the toilet.  Nothing like trying to do your business with Jesus staring at you from next to the cross.  While I can see how it could cause some “stage fright,” I like to look at it as a reminder that no matter how crappy we are, Jesus is able and willing to wipe off all our crap and flush it away to a place where we will never have to deal with it again.

(If you don’t see it, look again.  It’s only the left side of His face.  From top to bottom, the white spots are: forehead, cheek/nose, lip, and shirt.  The empty spaces are his eye and mustache/beard.  If you still don’t see it then I don’t know what to tell you.)