One of the popular phrases when I was growing up was, “You can do anything!” I know it came from well-meaning adults who wanted to encourage the children of my generation to dream big and work hard. I had a problem, though: the statement didn’t really make a lot of sense to me.
You see, I really can’t do anything. I’m not very athletic, so I have little future in professional level gymnastics or softball. I’m afraid of deep water, so I have no desire to be a swimmer or deep sea diver or a part of the US Navy. And, besides my great dislike of bugs, I kill a plethora of plants even when I’m trying to keep them alive, so anything in the Horticultural and Agricultural world are out.
Could I overcome my fear of deep water or dislike of bugs? Maybe. Could I work with a trainer and coach and become more sports-like? Probably. Could I become a green-thumbed plant lover? Doubtful. But here’s my question: Why?
Why is this a good idea?
Obviously, I need to be a healthy person, but that does not necessitate me becoming great on the volleyball court. I just need to move everyday–walking, aerobics, maybe a league of a sport where everyone understands I am simply there for fun.
Many of you know I firmly believe in overcoming fears, but that doesn’t mean I need to spend six months on a submarine just to decrease the control the fear deep water has over my life.
Instead, what I’ve tried to teach my children is this: You can do anything that God calls you to do. Now that’s a statement with a whole lot of truth!
Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you.” And Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”
You see, I had the plan to be an accountant. It was indoors away from water and bugs. It requires no athleticism, only a mind good with numbers. I love numbers. I love analyzing numbers. I love to dig into budgets to see what the numbers are telling me so I can help ministries plan better for the future.
But that was not God’s plan for me, and I knew it as I started my junior year in college. I caused some turmoil in my family by quitting at that time, but somewhere deep inside me, I knew that degree was not for me. Not that I even dared to dream at that moment that He wanted me to write books! Only great people did that.
But isn’t it amazing what God can do.
Perhaps you grew up with people filling your head with the thought that you can do anything. Or perhaps you even heard, “You can do anything you set your mind to.” I’m not really sure that’s any better because the bottom line is that God’s plan is the one that will prevail no matter what we think or strive toward.
I had to decide that God’s plan was better (even though I thought it was crazy). Are you in that place as well? Or are you frozen, afraid to take the next step, convinced God’s plan is crazy?
Come on. Be brave. Let’s join together to dump the world’s expectations and move further down the path God laid for us.