Jesus asks us to follow Him. Are you willing to say YES?
As a life-long Christian, I (usually) strive to live a life pleasing to God. But when it comes to turning my life over to God, well, that’s a different story. As I prayerfully consider taking my journey to the next level, I wonder what it would truly involve to say YES to Jesus and turn my life over to Him.
But, frankly, I’m afraid.
It scares me because I don’t want to be asked to do something I don’t want to do. Something that catapults me out of my comfort zone. Something that takes me away from my family.
I think of Mother Teresa and her difficult journey. I imagine the disciples who left their families and everything they had behind. Those who lost their lives for Jesus.
I’m not ready for that. I’m not willing to leave my husband, move to Uganda, and give away all my possessions.
But maybe that’s not what Jesus expects of me.
I can say YES within the context of my life, right? Isn’t that better than saying No? I certainly hope so, because that’s my current goal.
Are you ready to say YES? Here’s how you can do it:
1 – Pray
God can only lead you if you talk to Him and listen for His answers. Pray for discernment. Pray for guidance. Then LISTEN.
When I decided that “writing for Jesus” was my calling and children’s books were one of the means I would use, I was pumped. My first Christian book would be a Good Samaritan story. Except I couldn’t get my story to gel. I couldn’t pull the plot together. It was a piece of junk. I became discouraged thinking it was what God wanted me to do, but I just couldn’t plan a worthy plot.
After a couple of weeks of unsuccessfully planning the Good Samaritan story, I sulked in utter frustration. Finally, I pleaded. “God, if You really want me to do this, You have to help me. This just isn’t working. Help me listen to You.”
Within minutes of that prayer, I had a completely new concept and by the end of the hour, I’d completed the first draft of “Heaven is Better.” I can’t explain how the concept came to me, besides a fleeting “knowing” out of thin air.
If I hadn’t been listening closely, I’m sure I would have missed God’s whisper.
Pray, then Listen.
2 – Look for opportunities
We don’t have to reinvent the wheel. God is ever-near and opportunities to serve Him in our daily life abound. We don’t have to worry about going to Uganda to find worthy causes.
What charitable causes pull at your heartstrings? Children, animals, the homeless, the environment, or the unborn? The possibilities are endless. Decide which are most important to you, then find ways to get involved.
If you don’t have time to volunteer because of work or family obligations, you can help financially. One of my personal favorites is the Guatemalan girl that my husband and I have been sponsoring for years. Getting to know her through our letters and knowing how our donation dollars have helped her family is extremely rewarding.
If you can’t help financially, how else can you help? One way I love to feel helpful online is to sign petitions for causes I care about. It’s a free and easy way to help. Social sharing of posts is another free method that supports organizations who are doing God’s work.
What opportunities do you have in your local area? What about online opportunities?
PS – Use caution when donating to causes. Charitynavigator.org can help ensure the cause you select is worthy of your support.
3 – Use your God-given talents
What are you good at? What makes your heart sing? How can you combine those things to do God’s work?
God has been leading me down the path to writing ever since my breast cancer diagnosis when He prompted my sister to suggest I write my story. That was a major detour from the industrial management job I held at the time. Since then, He’s been leading me down a winding writing path, but I’m finally feeling like all the wandering has led me to and prepared me for this series of Christian children’s books. I don’t know what the future holds for me after that, but I know He’s been preparing me for whatever it is.
What are your God-given talents? How could He be leading you to use them for His good?
4 – Be willing to expand beyond your comfort zone
I’ve broken out of my shy shell over the years, but I’d still avoid crowds of strangers if I had a choice. We each have a comfort zone and mine is being behind the scene.
What if I’m asked to step into the forefront? I know God will lead me, even if I get sweaty and tongue-tied. He’s been preparing me over the course of my writing journey to step out of the shadows to say what I want and need to say.
If God asks you to step out of your comfort zone, listen to Him. He will guide you and He’s always by your side. And I guarantee that anything He asks you to do you can handle. Chances are, these challenges will help you grow into your next level of service to Him.
Are you ready to say YES to Jesus? Are you afraid to say YES? Have you already said YES? What was the result? Tell me in the comments!
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