Soccer season is starting for the fall. My daughter is a soccer player and loves the competition of it. She has a drive like her Mom and doesn’t like to lose. But the one thing I notice about her is her apprehension. She gets nervous before every game. During practice she can give any other player a run for her money. But when it comes to the game, it takes her some time to get pumped. It takes her a little while to gain her confidence. She tends to be a little tentative instead of going all out. More often than not, as her Mom, I need to encourage her. I need to remind her to go and get a goal. I know she can do it, but she doesn’t have that same confidence. She waits for me to remind her that she can do it. She has the talent and the speed to score. She’s a winner but only when she applies herself.
I was thinking of this while studying the book of Exodus with my twins. We are talking about Moses for our bible study as part of homeschool. This week we read of Moses calling. He stood before the burning bush and listened to God give him his purpose. Just like my daughter, Moses kept coming up with excuses as to why he could not accomplish the task set before him. He complained that he didn’t have the power. He needed some miracles. God gave him three. He said he couldn’t speak eloquently. God gave him Aaron to speak for him. God reminds him that he will give him all the help he needs. Moses just needs to go and accomplish what is asked. “Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.” (Exodus 4:12) God insists that Moses can do what He has sent him to do, but Moses just won’t believe Him. He looks for every reason under the sun as to why this is a bad idea. He is afraid of failure.
This difference between Moses and my daughter is that when I remind her that she can do it, it takes her fears away. If I tell her to go and get a goal, more often than not, she will get one. And once she scores that first goal, she continues on strong because her confidence has taken over. She knew in her heart that she could do it. She just needed a little prompting. She needs her Mom to remind her of her gifts. She needs someone to encourage her. She doesn’t need someone beating her down every time she makes a mistake. She needs someone lifting her up and reminding her that she can do it. And once she sees that someone else believes in her, she feels like she can do the impossible. Her confidence soars. Her inhibitions vanish.
You know, life is really not about how many goals you score in soccer. It’s not about the size of your bank account. It is about following the Lord. It is about succeeding in the things He has called you to do. He is there cheering us on. He often calls us to things we are uncomfortable with. But he calls us to do those so He can expose our gifts. He gives us desires and gifts to serve Him with. Our problem is that we hide them and settle for an ordinary life. God never called us to the ordinary. He is an extraordinary God and calls His children to an abundant life. We should be cheering each other on. We should be building each other up instead of tearing each other down. We should point out the gifts in others and encourage them in those gifts. Just like my daughter, we just need someone else that believes in us to prompt us to good works. What is your gift? What is God calling you to do? What desire has He placed in your heart? What’s holding you back? The only thing holding you back is yourself. God is able whether you believe it or not.