Sitting in church one Sunday, my mind was reviewing the list of things I had to do after the service. Then my pastor caught my attention with a question. “What is God doing in and through you?”
My head popped up. My mind raced. My seat groaned as I shifted from side to side.
What do you mean what is God doing in and through me? I thought. The mental list commenced as my pastor continued. The question and the list nagged me while I ran errands and checked off my afternoon to-do list.
Later that evening when the house was quiet I sat and listed some of the things God was doing in and through me.
In: I read my Bible when I can. I pray and try to listen. I try to be obedient.
Through: I lead Bible Studies for baseball wives. I write a Christian blog. I write devotions for Baseball Chapel.
When I looked at the newly written list, my heart dropped into my toes. The list wasn’t of what God was doing but what I was doing. What was God doing in and through me? What was I allowing him to do? It was all about me. How self-centered am I?
The reality was my busy life, and checklist stood in the way of my connection with Jesus. I didn’t see anything wrong with my life choices. I wasn’t making immoral decisions. My life was busy. I was getting things done.
“What was God doing in and through me?” Knowing this was going to be a spiritual journey, I tried to push the question deeper and further into my head and spirit, but God would not allow me to push it too far. He knew—and eventually, I knew—the preparation of this spiritual adventure would have to begin in my heart.
I opened my Bible to the verse our pastor had referenced. “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20). The meatiness of this one verse lay heavy on my heart. I absorbed the words, the promise of Christ. I opened my journal and began to write.
“Now to him who is able.” I read the words, emphasizing Him. He is able. He wants us to focus on Him and His ability. So I asked myself whether or not I viewed God as the Almighty Powerful or if I believed my abilities, lists, and accomplishments were enough. Did my actions blind me to what He wanted to do in my life? Did my choices reveal a heart that aligned itself every day with His Word and His ability?
Many of the choices I make are good choices, but then there are the not-so-good choices—the ones that make me feel guilty or inadequate. I know I often lack a healthy balance in my life. I ride the wave of success, enjoying the joys that come with it in one moment, then fall to the feeling of failure when things don’t work out the way I think they should.
This spiritual journey wasn’t what I wanted to embark on; my comfortable Christian life was just fine the way it was. Or was it?
Do we impede the power of God by puffing up on the joys of success or crushing under the weight of failure? Do our circumstances hinder His ability to work in and through us? Do we hamper His mighty power by trying to do everything on our own?
These and many other questions drove me deeper into the adventure of finding out how to allow God to work in and through me.
#makingroombook Chapter 1