It’s late, and the home is a mess. There are dirty dishes scattered around the room, and the length of tomorrow’s to-do list, after a crazy-busy weekend, is already beginning to haunt me. A few minutes ago, another stressor added its weight to my shoulders as I remembered a commitment that I missed meeting this afternoon. And the deadline for having this article written will be here in less than fifty minutes. (It’s not always this way, but we’ve had a particularly crazy week.)
Sometimes, I wish I could go back to having fewer responsibilities so I can apply what I know at my own leisurely pace. This desire was evident in the frustrated words I spoke to my husband just twenty minutes ago. I told him that he had to stop pushing me to write (even though I tell him every day God’s calling me to write). I told him that God wanted me to take time—a whole month, even—to just read and study and stop wrestling with the keyboard in the hopes that something truly valuable would come out of it.
As Kyle’s patient response broke into my daydreams of sitting at a window by the bay and studying to my heart’s content, I began to feel ashamed of what I said.
God doesn’t want me to take a break from responsibility. I want that break. I had to repent of my lie, but I still couldn’t help feeling overwhelmed by everything there is to do.
Why being responsible is so hard
We know the parable of the talents. The Lord has given each and every one of us our own handful of “talents” in the form of a testimony, resources, giftings, and a burning desire to see change in the world.
Every single gift God gives comes with a measure of responsibility. To whom much is given, much is required (Luke 12:48).
But having responsibility is not easy. Responsibility demands the ability to respond correctly. You are “response-able.” Able to respond.
In my case, I know that my responsibility is to write.
My talents come in the form of…
- a testimony of God’s deliverance from sexual abuse through in the renewal of my mind;
- the resources of a supportive husband, a laptop, and a connection to the internet;
- giftings in research, systematic thinking, and writing;
- and a strong desire to help other women to learn truth and strategies that help them rise above the chaos of life so they can find their voice and begin causing real change in the world around them.
What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. (Matthew 10:27)
To these talents and this command, I must learn to be able to respond.
My spirit is indeed willing, but my flesh is weak.
Obtaining the Ability to Respond Correctly
I have a lot of responsibilities, and the demands to respond correctly to each gift and opportunity do not slow down with age.
There are millions of people to help, and countless more problems to address, and I don’t even know where to start. I have written and rewritten incessantly, always desiring to achieve perfection with my first attempts at publishing something significant.
But the essence of perfection is maturity. I won’t master this blogging thing right off the bat.
So, I’m done procrastinating. Being responsible is about taking action to do the right thing.
I have to start somewhere.
The key to begin managing your responsibilities is to start anywhere, and begin applying what you know. Even if you know only a very little.
Starting anywhere is not a magic ticket. The greater a struggle is, the longer it can take to overcome it. One needs focus, experience, diligence, and resilience to win battles. And, most importantly, one must never give up.
The ability to respond correctly can only come from the Holy Spirit working to bring about fruit in our lives. My abilities to teach through writing will only come from the Holy Spirit teaching my fingers to fight for truth. So, trusting this great God who has been priming my pen for over twenty years, I am committed to starting anywhere.
Yes. Our lives are already overwhelmed with a million responsibilities and to-do lists a mile long. But we can no longer afford the luxury of daydreaming and reading about the big things the Lord is calling us to do. Our nation is burning down around us and it’s time to apply what we know. There are so many people who need the answers we have. This blog is about helping women get on top of their lives and move forward, starting today, so they can begin to live ministry-oriented lives now.
Responsibility demands the courage to do the right thing, even when you don’t have all the answers. Is there anything you know to do, that you know is the right thing to do? Do that repeatedly. Be faithful in the little things, and then you’ll be given more light. It’s time to stand in courage, trust the Lord, and be committed to learning what He wants us to do in such a time as this. It’s time to begin making big decisions for the glory of God.
It’s time to start anywhere.
What is God calling you to start?