Encouragement for Today - September 4, 2012


September 4, 2012

But I Don't Have What It Takes
Pastor Steven Furtick

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me." - 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

"You don't belong here, boy. You don't have anything worth saying to these people."

You'd think a pastor about to preach to thousands of people eagerly awaiting his message would feel confident and courageous as he walks to the pulpit. But as I stepped out on stage, I literally had to talk to myself aloud to drown out the voice inside me telling me I didn't have what it takes.

Have you ever stopped short of God's calling on your life because you felt almost paralyzed by your limitations and insecurities?

We often excuse ourselves from God's greater vision because we don't believe we have enough for God to work with. Maybe it's our insufficient experience. Lack of resources. Lackluster training. Awkward social skills. Maybe it's a busted up marriage or a job we're sure is meaningless.

Unfortunately, one of the enemy's most effective strategies is to fill our mind with thoughts about what we don't have and all the ways we fall short. But when we focus on what we lack, it can keep us from realizing what we have is more than enough for God.

You see, God has a history of using what little someone has in order to do great things that only He can do. When I hear that voice reminding me of my shortcomings and limitations, I've decided to say, "You're right. But my greatest limitation is God's greatest opportunity."

All throughout Scripture God has shown this to be true time and time again.

When calling Moses to lead the Israelites out of slavery from the Egyptians, God simply asked him, "What is in your hand?" (see Exodus 4:2). It was just a staff—a common tool used by a common worker for a common purpose. But God used it for something greater, transforming it into an extraordinary tool for the extraordinary purposes of turning the Nile into blood and parting the Red Sea.

When feeding the five thousand, Jesus didn't send the disciples to buy out McDonalds. He simply asked them, "How many loaves do you have?" Five loaves and two fish were more than enough (see Mark 6:30-44).

When the prophet Elisha was approached by the desperate widow in 2 Kings 4:1-7 he simply asked her, "Tell me, what do you have in your house?" She said she had nothing at all,"except a small jar of olive oil." It turns out, one jar of oil isn't a bad place to start. God supernaturally multiplied that one jar of oil until she had enough to pay her debts and live with her sons on what was left.

And how did these miracles start? They started with something that seemed to amount to nothing.

These examples remind us we need to take inventory of what's right in front of us. Use that. Be obedient right there.

Start saying yes to God right where you are. Instead of focusing on your limitations and insecurities and saying, "I can't," start praying, "God use what I have. Take what little I have and make it overflow."

Indeed your greatest limitation is God's greatest opportunity.

Dear Lord, thank You that You are not limited to dealing with my current state and weaknesses. I want to be greater and do great things for You Lord. Use the little I have to give and make it great for You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
If you sense that you were meant for more but feel stuck where you are, Pastor Steven Furtick's new book, Greater, will give you the confidence to know nothing is impossible with God, the clarity to see the next step, and the courage to do what God's calling you to. Order your copy today by clicking here.

You're invited to join Pastor Furtick on Lysa TerKeurst's Unglued webcast, September 6th at 8pm EST. For more information, click here.

Are you ready to open your imagination to the possibility that God has a vision for your life that is greater? Click here to sign up for Pastor Steven Furtick's "Pray Greater For 4 Days" Challenge to help you take your faith to the next level.

Reflect and Respond:
Have you ever doubted God's calling in your life because you believed you didn't have what it takes?

List 3 areas in your life where you can say "yes" to God right where you are. Now pray, "God use what I have. Take what little I have and make it overflow." Pray this simple prayer any time you start to feel weak or like you aren't good enough.

For more encouragement, click here to sign up for Pastor Steven Furtick's "Pray Greater For 4 Days" Challenge.

Power Verses:
Romans 8:26, "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans." (NIV)

Isaiah 40:29, "He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak." (NIV)

© 2012 by Steven Furtick. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
616-G Matthews-Mint Hill Road
Matthews, NC 28105

Originally published Tuesday, 04 September 2012.