What Only You Can Do

May 22, 2016

 

This prayer has popped into my head several times lately and has become a focal point for my past few weeks:

 

Do what only You can do.

 

Years of perfectionism constantly leave me wondering, "What else do I need to do in order for (whatever I'm hoping for or things that God has promised) to happen?" What else do I need to do? There has to be some work- some type of preparation that needs to be done, God. Right? Yeah, You promise things, but... isn't there something I need to be doing in this time?

 

And no answer comes. Sometimes. Sometimes the answer is just to be where we are. In this moment. In this time. In this season.

 

And honestly, that's ridiculously frustrating.

 

I've been thinking about Joseph. (Trust me, this will connect.)

 

So Joseph, a young lad, receives an amazing dream from God. Amazing. He's going to be king. What teenager doesn't revel in that idea? His brothers all hated him, but he suddenly has this hope that one day things will be different- one day he won't be the laughingstock of the brotherhood- they'll bow down to him.

 

A promise from God. He received an amazing promise from God.

 

Next thing that happened- he's in a hole.

 

Then sold into slavery.

 

Then ends up in jail.

 

And in the midst of all of those things, sometimes he gets seasons of responsibility and growth.

 

And I wonder if, not just in the horrible times, but in the times of responsibility as well,

 

if Joseph is wondering- '"Why did you show me this promise God?

 

This is not now. This is not anywhere near that. I don't see how this will work. And most of all, what's the purpose of me doing all of these responsibilities if I know it's not ultimately what You've made me for. Why would you show me that so far out?"

 

I wonder if Joseph needed the promise in order to keep going. In order to stay faithful. Honestly, the promise is what seemed to have caused his brothers to throw Joseph into a well in the first place. The promise seemed to begin the misfortune- the misfortune that would lead him right into the center of God's will.

 

So what does this have to do with God doing what only He can do?

 

In the middle times, the times of responsibility. The time of jail. The times of seeming nothingness

 

Joseph had to trust that God was doing what only God could do.

 

There are two facets of that humble, beautiful prayer.

 

The first side-

 

"God. I've done all that I can do in this situation. I have done all you have asked. I've done all I could think of."

 

The second side is an opening-up to the immense possibility of God and His ability-

 

"God. You are more than able. It's just like You to do something amazing. Please do THAT. WHATEVER AMAZING THING YOU HAVE PLANNED. BECAUSE MAJESTY IS IN YOUR CHARACTER. THERE ARE THINGS YOU HAVE PROMISED THAT ONLY YOU ARE AMAZING ENOUGH TO DO. PLEASE DO THEM."

 

One facet is more so appealing to His mercy- how He is constantly willing to intercede and help. And the next side is appealing to His amazing grace- that He can and will always do over and above what we expect and more than we deserve. Because that's just who He is. What an almighty God to serve. He fills in what we can't do (and even sometimes what we could do), and then He does even more and blows our expectations out of the water. What a God. And He is ours.

 

So I guess I'll keep praying it. I feel like I'm in a middle season. And more and more I'm feeling like every season is a middle season. I"m not sure when I'll ever arrive. Our lives are so transient. Constantly developing. We're constantly growing and moving and shaping and learning.

 

And honestly sometimes it's tiring. And we can only do what we can do. And He'll do what He can do. In every season. At every time. In every way. According to His will. he is more than able. More than able.

 

God, do what only You can do. We take hold of you. Knowing You is our end goal in every season, regardless of the great things ahead that You have promised. Do what only You can do, Holy King.

 

 

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