Last night we took a look at Jeremiah 1:4-10. God places a call on the life of Jeremiah to which he responds something like "WHAT THE HECK NO WAY!! I CAN'T EVEN TALK - I'M ONLY A YOUTH!" God replies to this comment at length, but begins with a succinct statement that pretty much sums it all up: "Do not say: I am only a youth." NO EXCUSES! God then goes on to tell Jeremiah about how God had placed His hand on Jeremiah, and had chosen him before he was in the womb. He tells Jeremiah that as a youth, He expects Jeremiah to make a difference NOW not later. The lie that has shacked our generation's mind is that we have our teenage years to slack and live for fun, when the truth is God has a plan for you TODAY.
Dear Teenager, God CHOSE YOU. He equipped you with specific passions, personality quirks, interests, and skills so he could accomplish his unique purpose in and through you. For the longest time I struggled with this concept. I saw God using another person in a specific way, and I sought to be used and shaped in an identical fashion. After reading this passage of scripture I was convicted in this area. God did not equip me with the same skill set as some of my heroes on purpose! He did not create me to be a clone of the men I so look up to. He did not create me to be the next ______________ fill in the blank with whoever. He created me to be the first and only Jon Braxton Leighton to walk this planet. He has a specific purpose for me that no one else can fulfill....and that purpose is NOW.
Week one we learned that we can do more than people expect when we believe the truth about who God says we are. God says we are carefully and wonderfully made. The insecurities we struggle with day to day were GIVEN to us with the purpose that we might glorify God, and rely on his strength through them. So, just about the time I get down because of my height, strength, acne, or inability I must stop immediately and praise God for equipping me with those things in order that I might better rely on Him. That's right - God equips you with your inabilities, because where you are weak, He is made strong. So, in essence, my weaknesses are my greatest strengths.
Alright, let's assume you've totally got this. You accept that you are who God made you to be, and you are prepared to make a difference TODAY. You're charged up, ready to challenge hell with a squirt gun, and now reality hits....What in the world am I supposed to DO? I don't know what I want to be when I grow up! I don't have the independence to just do a bunch of stuff 'cause I live with my parents! If I don't know God's will for my future, how can I live God's will for my present? Where do I start?
Awesome questions. You can only know God's will for your life INSIDE of God's will for your life. So if you don't know what to do tomorrow, do what you know today. You can live a life of obedience to the God-given authority above you. You can be the best most efficient student you can be. You can live a life of purity. You can love people like Jesus. You can diligently share your faith. You can have an active, healthy relationship with God. These are all things you can live in the now, to equip yourself for what God has for your future. Want to learn more about how to take steps today toward your tomorrow??? I'll see you next week on The Journey.