If God is Asking You To Do Something...
As a sophomore, I decided to take a 4000 level senior seminar class. The teacher convinced me to sign up, as it wouldn't be offered again during my time at Virginia Tech. When she went over the syllabus on the first day of class, she took time to explain all the parameters of the final research paper. I'd never written a paper that long (15-20 pages), and I knew there was no way I'd be able to do it. I wanted to drop the class. Over the course of the semester, my professor gave me the tools I needed to be successful. Not only was she a good teacher, but she took us to the library and taught us how to use the research materials, gave us examples of excellent papers, and assigned us 10 smaller (2-3 page) papers throughout the course of the semester along with extensive feedback. By the end of the semester, I wrote that paper, and I even got an A on it. Writing the paper was difficult, but I got it done.
My sister and I are 17 months apart. Growing up, sometimes that felt like years, and sometimes it felt more like we were twins. A cousin of mine just had her second baby, 20 months younger than her first born. During the anticipation of Ruby's birth, I asked my mom whether she was scared of having two kids so close in age when she was pregnant with me.
Her response surprised me. She said what she was scared of more than anything was that she wouldn't be able to love me as much as she loved my sister. This sounds mean, but I wasn't offended. She's not the first woman I've heard express this. Motherhood unlocks something in women, and they experience a capacity for love greater than they ever imagined. It's hard to picture that same amount of love existing twice.
But somehow, most (all?) moms will tell you, it does. They don't have to split the existing love into pieces when a new child is born. Instead, the love doubles, triples, multiplies to cover all the children equally, by the grace of God. He provides us with the ability to love one another (1 John 4:19), and He equips moms (and dads) with the love they need for their children.
The idea that God equips us is found throughout Scripture. The book of Acts is filled with examples of God equipping the apostles for ministry with the Holy Spirit. In Exodus 4, Moses tells God that he isn't the right guy for the job. The Lord, though His anger burns against Moses, allows Aaron, Moses' brother, to accompany Him. In Exodus 31, God fills Bezalel and Oholiab with His Spirit so that they can carry out His intricate design for the tabernacle and priestly garments. I've been reading through these instructions wondering why the author of Exodus would include them in the book and why God would put them in there when we no longer need a tabernacle or priest in order to commune with God. I think part of the reason is to emphasize God's provision. Sometimes in life, we get overwhelmed by the tasks in front of us without remembering that God will equip us with what we need to accomplish them.
This doesn't mean that we sit back and things will be taken care of. The Israelites still had to actually build the tabernacle. God gave them the ability to do it, but they still had to put in the work. Nehemiah's experience is similar. He moves from a job in the king's palace to rebuilding Jerusalem by manual labor. The Lord gave him favor with the king, but Nehemiah still had to speak up and make his request. And when he got to Jerusalem, he had to get to work.
It's easy for us to sit back and say "I can't do that." We live in a generation that loves to make excuses (myself included). But the truth is that if God calls us to something, He will equip us with what we need to get it done, whether it's money for a missions trip, a building space for an event, the right words to say in a job interview. At the end of the day, He is sovereign over it all. That thing you think you can't do? Pray about it. And if you know that the Lord is asking you to do it, then get up and get to work.
It's kind of like that old saying, "If God called you to it, God will bring you through it." Just don't forget, you have to do your part, too.
"Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen." - Hebrews 13:20-21