There’s a lie you’ve probably been told. It’s a well meaning lie, often told by the people that love us most, but it’s a lie nonetheless, and it’s a lie that makes some people waste huge amounts of time. What’s the lie?
“You can do anything you want to do?”
Of course, there are variations on this theme: “You can do anything that you put your mind to.” “If you work hard, you can accomplish your dreams.” These phrases are not true. Wow I thought you said this was a word of encouragement. Trust me, it is, but before I can encourage you, I need to tear down a few myths. So often we just assume that wanting to and working hard is enough, but there is another component. Natural talent? That’s part of it. We’ve all seen the talent shows with the people who think they have it, when clearly they don’t. Physical attributes? That is a component as well. We’ve all seen the guy with no athletic ability who dreams of sports stardom even though clearly it’s not going to work for him. These people are quick to point to Michael Jordan who got cut from his HS basketball team. Yes, that’s true, but he was Michael Jordan.
Bottom line is there are things you will probably never be able to do and that is something most of us will just have to deal with. Knowing that up front is actually quite helpful, because trying to do those things will be nothing but a distraction keeping you away from your true purpose. You see, you were created by God. Scripture says “We are God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do works which God prepared in advance for us to do.” In other words, God created and equipped you do something great. Something that will be a real benefit in this world. By the way, this thing will not be drudgery to you, because, most likely, God gave you a passion for it. Finding this thing, and doing it, will give you a very fulfilling life, not just for you, but it will be a benefit to the world around you.
“Wait a minute,” you might be thinking. “What about that verse that says, ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me? Doesn’t that mean I can do anything?” Can you fly? Can you jump tall buildings in a single bound? No, you’re not Superman or Wonder Woman. When Paul writes “I can do all things,” the emphatic words are “through Christ.” In other words you can do anything God wants you to do, the things for which He gives you strength. Part of knowing your calling is knowing your strengths. What has God equipped you for? What has God made you passionate about? These things are the things at which you will be amazing. These are the things you can do, and when you do them, God shows up and gives you more strength and does the supernatural stuff that we all need Him to do.
You can’t do everything, but you can do everything God has called you to and when you do, you will find grace and strength and meaning and God will use you to make this world a better place in big and small ways. Friend, God has an amazing purpose for your life, a life crafted in perfect love and that thing, in Christ, you can do and when you do it, life will feel like it’s all falling into place. Trust me in this. I know.
When it comes to what God has called you to, be encouraged, you can do it. It may not be easy, but the God who loves you is with you. In Him, you can do it. He will give you the strength.
You can do it!