Get over your hang-ups. God needs you.
September 15, 2019
“That’s just not me” is a popular refrain today. The message is clear: I cannot or will not do something because it is not in my nature to do it. If we’re honest, we’ll admit that sometimes we use the phrase as an excuse when we simply don’t want or are afraid to do something. Our addiction to comfort (especially in the West) is not helping matters. Far too often, we are quick to call anything that challenges us, requires adjustments or involves discomfort “not me.”
A few characters in the Bible offered God some version of the line when he asked them to do something, but God would not have it. When Moses complained that public speaking was not his thing, God asked him who made the mouth (Ex. 4:11) and still sent the inarticulate man to Egypt to do some serious public speaking. When Jeremiah similarly complained that he was too young to speak for God and speaking was not his thing, God ignored the complaint, addressed the fear behind it, and still sent him on a difficult mission that would have been daunting for anyone no matter their age (Jer. 1:6-8). In both cases, it’s as though God was saying to the men, “Please tell me something I don’t know about you. I know you better than you know yourself. I know you completely, and I know you can do this.”
I thought about the “it’s not me” problem recently when I found myself using it as an excuse to not do something that required that I step a bit too far out of my shell. As I wrestled with the idea, I could almost hear heaven scream “Get over it!” I was not being asked to somehow become a gregarious extrovert because that would probably never happen (and, besides, the task at hand did not require that), but I was being reminded that every now and again my personality, quirks and preferences must yield to the will of God. God expects us to set aside our hang-ups and embrace discomfort if his leading requires it. That’s just being a disciple. And, if you’re a believer, “that’s you.”