I wasn’t prepared to speak at a weekend women’s event…
At least, I thought I wasn’t.
Sure, I had outlined my topics and had basic notes on paper, but I was unsettled about something. I assumed it was because I hadn’t spent enough time in preparation. It was my own responsibility and fault, and I was paying the consequences in my doubt that I would be able to minister to the fullest extent to which God intended.
But why would I doubt Him?
Sure, there are consequences to not stewarding responsibilities well. But ministering to a group of women for the weekend was too important to God for me and my lack of efforts to get in His way. The women were prepared. They came with open hearts and minds, ready to experience God’s presence in life-changing and life-challenging ways.
Well, at least, that’s what I assume because that’s what it seemed to me. Then I realized they might have come as unprepared as I did. Perhaps their schedules were so tight that they really didn’t give much thought to the weekend until they were on their way, away from their families and jobs and other everyday constants. Perhaps they had just gone through a fiery trial or were still in the middle of it. Perhaps an abundance of blessings caused them to let down their guard a bit, taking on an air of personal accomplishment or status instead of the humble reminder that it is God who accomplishes and provides.
The truth is I no more knew what each woman brought to the weekend retreat than anyone knew what I brought.
Only He knew my lack of preparation, questions about His provision, doubts about my adequacy, and the needs that I couldn’t even identify. And He met each and every one. He opened my eyes to needs and opportunities I couldn’t have anticipated had I tried. He opened my heart to pour into others and let them pour into me. He opened my ears to hear from Him in a gentle whisper and an overwhelming rush of power.
He provided despite my lack of preparation.
He prepared me through my lack of preparation.
I was caught off guard, and perhaps that’s why He moved in such powerful ways that weekend.
He gives me responsibilities, but I am certainly not in control.
And I am glad.