“The greatest resistance I face is my own comfort zone and the inertia of attitude and low faith thinking that works to keep me there. You?” - Gary Wood, Christian Executive Coach, from May 10, 2009 Twitter post
This recent Twitter post from my cyber-colleague caught my eye a few weeks ago and in an ironic demonstration of its sentiment, it’s taken me a while to respond to it … despite the fact that I’ve actively thought about it several times since.
Although I think we could all say we’ve had moments that would fall within the parameters of Gary’s question, I very recently experienced something very specific that made it resonate for me….
My oldest son had recently come back from a retreat with his church youth group and as he filled the room with spiritual fire in the telling of his trip, the Holy spirit filled me with a charge to show my gratitude and appreciation to our church’s youth pastor for all the hard work he’s put into this challenging ministry and for the impact he’s had on my son’s life and spiritual growth.
I hesitate to use the cliché “Devine Inspiration” but it’s the simplest and truest explanation for what came next.
Despite the fact that I hadn’t picked up my guitar with any regularity for over 10 years and hadn’t penned any music in over 20, a full 5-verse, multi-chorus, bridge, melody and chords came to me in a manic flash that found its way to half a dozen large sticky-notes from my bed stand.
So did I run right out and play the inspired tune for this youth pastor? If course not. The excuses ranged from doubting myself “this isn’t ready yet, maybe I should work on it more” to doubting the Holy Spirit “maybe this wasn’t what I was supposed to do with this message.”
For two months after the song was finished, several perfect opportunities presented themselves for me to share the song with the youth pastor for whom it was written, yet I seemed to miss each one. On one occasion I even blamed the devil for throwing obstacles in front of those opportunities to prevent me from presenting my offering of appreciation.
But all the while I felt the hand of the Holy Spirit pushing me outside my comfort zone (although sometimes it felt like I was being lovingly shoved into oncoming traffic) and demanding my obedience. Rest assured the song finally found its vehicle… I’ll choose to believe it was the one intended by the Holy Spirit, rather than the last of many missed opportunities.
Lord, give me the strength and follow Your will, even when … or especially when, it pushes me outside my comfort zone. My faith in You is strong, but help me have faith in myself when You are clearly trying to use me to fulfill your purposes.