Lent Day 3: Do You Believe that I Can Do This?

As I mentioned, the words of the song, “Jesus Loves Me” fought a losing battle with the gloomy narrative swimming around in my head that said, “do you really think you measure up…don’t take yourself so seriously… you’ll never find someone to love you… you’re quite a mess you know… you probably ought to work out more… you probably ought to study harder… you’ll never amount to much… look at you!” It wasn’t until 2006 that I realized I’d been shackled with FEAR and unbelief most of my life. In a moment of personal chaos and despair I became aware of a choice I needed to make. Would I allow fear to continue its destructive dominance in my life, or would I walk through it with Jesus?

Thankfully I was walking through life with a friend at the time. He and I were both at the point in life men get to when we realize we no longer have all the answers. In fact, we came to know there were many more questions than our youth allowed us to be aware of. So, by the time this whole “fear” thing reared it’s ugly mug, I was in an uncontrolled skid toward depression.   I needed help! We were in his car driving down the road he said, “Have you read today’s Utmost?” I had not read Oswald Chambers Oct 27th entry in “My Utmost for His Highest”, so I grabbed it from his back seat and began to read. It was right there, I had never seen it before! Jesus, when speaking to two blind men, asks them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” Chambers expounded on this question: “Our Lord unwaveringly asks us that question, and it confronts us in every individual situation we encounter. The one great challenge to us is— do I know my risen Lord? Do I know the power of His indwelling Spirit? Am I wise enough in God’s sight, but foolish enough according to the wisdom of the world, to trust in what Jesus Christ has said? Or am I abandoning the great supernatural position of limitless confidence in Christ Jesus, which is really God’s only call.”

After reading that, I knew my answer to Jesus’ question, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” was “NO”. And if I was being completely honest with myself my answer was, “No, I don’t really believe that you can do this Lord, so I am going to do it. I am in control, thank you very much!” And that is how I went about my days. Being the “BEST” at everything was how I approached life. The best follower of Jesus, the best husband, father, friend, director of a non-profit ministry. This pursuit was exhausting and left me frazzled, spent and feeling alone. After reading the excerpt from Utmost I began to explore the idea, what if the goal is not to become the best ________? (fill in the blank). What if the goal is to believe that God can do this, whatever the “this” is I am currently facing. What if the goal is to move beyond living in the head, beyond having everything figured out? So with Jesus’ question haunting me, in a good way, I asked the Lord how to get out of this pattern of fear and of doing things on my own. What I heard seemed elementary, but I went with it…

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