I’m Just NOT Ready (When Leaders Feel Inadequate)

// Her SMS arrived at the worst possible moment. All of my ‘balls’ were in the air, and I was teetering on the brink of a multi-tasking implosion. You know, that moment when multi-tasking becomes physically painful because your brain simply can’t handle ONE… MORE… THING.

Let me set the stage: Our first mentoring* meeting was set for that evening and, for once, I had all my ducks in a row. In fact, I was feeling pretty proud of myself. My group was in order, the venue was ready, the food was ready, the resources were ready. It was perfect.

Without warning, my schedule filled with last-minute applications, new placements, new groups, new leaders, and a whole lot of coordination.

New people? That’s awesome! Oh no, where are we going to put them all?

Before two hours passed, all my ‘ducks’ were decidedly messed up. Don’t get me wrong. Growth is an excellent thing, but it often messes with our finely-laid plans, doesn’t it?

I was in the middle of wrapping my head around my new responsibilities when the SMS arrived. It came from one of the leaders I had been walking with for many years. She had been doing so well up until now—steady, mature, and reliable. Her words stunned me.

“Sorry to dump this on you now… bad shape in the heart department… hypocrite… letting you know where I’m at… I don’t have my ‘poop’ together… concerned about leading…”

I started hyperventilating. Was this seriously happening today? Six hours before the first meeting of the year? Oh my gosh! //

I quickly called her to see what was going on, and soon discovered the problem.

  • Was she living in sin? No.
  • Had she committed major crimes? No.
  • Was she addicted to drugs, alcohol, or porn? No.

Her biggest crime was simply neglecting her spirit.

She was ‘empty’ in both spirit and soul, and she’d been listening to the lies of the enemy that said, “How can you lead those women? You don’t know what you’re talking about. See, you had a fight with that person last night. You’re a hypocrite. You can’t do this. You have nothing to offer. You should quit now.”

What a rotten enemy! He always attacks us when we’re most vulnerable.

Why do people believe the lie that they can ONLY lead when they are perfect? My friends, that will never happen. If you are waiting to be perfect before obeying God and serving people, you will NEVER be ready.

We lead because God is perfect and He enables us, despite our imperfections. Click To Tweet

In fact, you don’t even have to ‘sin’ to feel disqualified. You don’t have to be an addict, a thief, or a whore. All you have to be is… EMPTY… in your emotions (your soul) and empty in your spirit (the part of you that connects with God).

If you are feeling empty today…

you desperately need to hear the Words of Life that God is speaking over you. HE LOVES YOU, HE LOVES YOU, HE LOVES YOU. And when you truly hear the wonderful things He’s saying about you, it’ll become easy to live up to that potential.

Isaiah 43:1 says,

“But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel, ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!'”

And 2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT says,

“Each time he said, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.”

 

My friends, growing in maturity is a SLOW process. It doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and pressure to be transformed into the image of His Son.

Success doesn’t mean perfection. No! But IF YOU LOOK AND SMELL MORE LIKE JESUS AT THE END OF THIS YEAR, THEN YOU’LL HAVE BEEN SUCCESSFUL!

God doesn’t call the qualified; he qualifies the called! Click To Tweet

 

A holy anger rose up in me, and I lovingly but firmly gave my friend a ‘kick in the butt.’ I charged her to take her negative thoughts captive and spend some time in God’s presence.

“My friend, you don’t have time to argue with the enemy about whether or not you are qualified. Get with Jesus NOW, and let Him fill up the empty spaces. You CAN do this!

She listened to me and did just that.  And the next morning, I got a different kind of SMS:

“Just some feedback. Thanks for the butt kicking earlier and pointing me to Jesus… Jesus came to the rescue, and our first meeting together went well. It’s going to be a good year!

Thank You, Father!

————————-♥————————-

 

* Me2 Mentoring is an amazing ministry in our church that strategically and intentionally mentors women to be ALL that God created them to be.

“Being transformed through relationships with God and one another.”

I am on the leadership team for Me2, and it’s such a privilege to walk with these fantastic women. In our area alone, we currently have over 400 women participating in over 40 groups (not including the other centres in South Africa, Holland, the UK, Canada, and the US). Check it out!

————————-♥————————-

Every Friday, I join an inspiring group of writers to write for FIVE MINUTES on a one-word prompt. No editing. No revising. Just WRITE. This week, the prompt word was SLOW.

// indicates the start and stop of the timer.

For more information on Five Minute Friday, check out Kate Motaung’s site!

A Message to Creatives

// The week has been unusually hot and sweltering. Water shortages and high humidity are making February unbearable.

Seriously… will the sweating ever end?

As such, Creative Collective was a welcome distraction from the heat. A hundred and thirty artists gathered together in the place of community and intimacy with the Father and each other.

Singers, musicians, writers, painters, dancers, photographers. You name it; we were together.

Worship was sweet. No need for air-con. There’s something so refreshing about people of-like-mind being in one place, with one purpose, one mind, and worshipping God together.

Last night was “Erwin night.” Funny, timely, significant. It was our chance to catch the heart of the leader and the dream for this unique community:    Read more

Fear is a Bully (plus a bonus video)

// OK, so can I be honest? This word—SAFE—has been much harder to write about than I expected.

Not because I don’t also desire with all my heart to be safe, stay safe, and keep my kids safe, but for a long time, safety was my god.

I mean, SAFETY was my god!

I’m ashamed to actually write that; it looks even more stupid written in black and white. How can a mature, intelligent woman of God even admit that?

But it’s true. I didn’t want to do ANYTHING that would put us in danger… even if it was God doing the asking. “Move to South Africa? Are you crazy?”

Why was I so desperate to live a small, SAFE existence? It’s simple…

F E A R

That’s why. Fear was my constant companion and daily tormentor.

  • Fear that one of my children would get hurt, or kidnapped, or killed.
  • Fear of a car crash, plane crash, or swimming accident.
  • Fear of spiders, snakes, sharks, or robbers.
  • Fear that the economy would collapse and leave us financially ruined.
  • Fear that cancer would knock on our door and take one of us away.
  • Fear of loneliness.
  • Fear of burnout.
  • Or worse yet, fear of insignificance.

But the truth is… I had fear because I didn’t REALLY understand WHO I WAS or WHO MY FATHER WAS. 

1 John 4:18 says,

Perfect Love Casts Out All Fear.

What does that mean? Well, I think it means that ‘perfect love casts out all fear.’ (duhhh)//

When we truly understand how kind and generous, strong and powerful God is, the ‘little’ things we fear lose their grip on our minds and hearts.

When a child understands that their dad is WAAAAAAY bigger than the bully down the street, they lose their fear of that bully.

Yes, Fear is a bully.

Fear was my bully, but fear has been gradually losing its grip on my life a little bit each day for the last ten years.

Because when the bigness of my God overwhelms the fearful thoughts in my mind, then I can truly understand that

IN HIM, I AM COMPLETELY SAFE

Fear is a bully, but our Father is bigger than that bully. And in HIM, we are perfectly SAFE! Click To Tweet

————————-♥————————-

All morning, as I’ve been meditating on this word ‘Safe,’ and wondering why it’s so difficult to organize my thoughts about it, the lyrics from the song “Oceans” have been playing over and over through my mind.

Sing the bridge with me…

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders

Let me walk upon the water

Wherever You would call me

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander

And my faith will be made stronger

In the presence of my Saviour

Enjoy! (my favourite part is around 5:10 mark)

Only in this place of His Presence will we find ourselves perfectly SAFE!

Thank You, Father!

————————-♥————————-

Every Friday, I join an inspiring group of writers to write for FIVE MINUTES on a one-word prompt. No editing. No revising. Just WRITE. This week, the prompt word was SAFE.

// indicates the start and stop of the timer.

For more information on Five Minute Friday, check out Kate Motaung’s site!