If someone were to ask you what you were most passionate about what would you say? More than just your favorite band, author, or sports team, what is your true passion? Is there anything you are involved in that you can’t imagine not doing? Is there something you are not currently involved in that won’t leave you alone? Something that every time you hear about others being able to do it, it feels as though it should be you? I know the feeling.
For many years, every time I would see a band performing I would think, “That looks like so much fun.” But then I would quickly dismiss the idea with thoughts like; “but I could never do that, I’m not good enough, talented enough, confident enough” and so on, whatever it took to placate the dream.
When the opportunity finally presented itself for me to be a part of the worship team at church I was scared to death but I pressed into it and as I did I felt a genuine sense of purpose. Then God upped the ante and through my pastor began pushing me out of the doors of the church to share my songs at local festivals and area churches. This experience was both fulfilling and terrifying.
As I continue to press into this, as both a ministry and a vocation, I realize that our enemy never stops from trying to hinder us from living out our passions. He simply looks for new, more subtle ways to squelch us. Why? Because our greatest passion surrendered to the will of God is – I believe – the very purpose God has for us (Ephesians 2:10). And, our greatest purpose is ultimately the most effective weapon we have to push back against the darkness – in other words, it is our greatest threat to the kingdom of darkness. If the enemy cannot get us to rationalize our passions away, he will resort to other more subtle methods, one of which is discouragement.
It seems to me God often calls us to the very places where we are the most reluctant. Our hesitancy may be a result of feelings of inferiority, pride, guilt, pain, or outright resentment. God called Paul (the Pharisee of Pharisees) to the Gentiles; He called Jonah to the Ninevites (who had terrorized his people); Moses was called back to Egypt to stand before Pharaoh, and on and on the story goes.
I believe God calls us to places we would rather not go to keep us constantly aware of our utter dependence on Him. However, when things get difficult the enemy is there to remind us of our old fears, hurts, or resentments and, if allowed, these feelings will fester to the point of robbing us of our joy and crippling if not outright surrendering our calling.
I was reminded of this this morning as I was reading in Colossians 2:18 where it says “Let no one keep defrauding you of your prize by delighting in self abasement…” As I read this, I recalled times when I have shifted my focus away from God’s call and back to my old hurts and insecurities. When I have allowed my thoughts to remain there my attitude has changed – every time – from one of purpose to one of insecurity, which the enemy often leads me to believe is humble reality.
However, true humility is walking out our passions with a sense of purpose that does not allow us be treated like a doormat. Rather, true humility allows us to walk in the confidence of our call, knowing that our purpose, the strength to walk it out, and whatever fruit it bears ultimately comes from Him (John 15). Like the good Father He is God loves nothing more than for us to join Him in His work and experience His joy as a result of it.
So keep calm and walk out your call in humility! God will make up for anything you lack.