Can I be honest with you? Lately, I’ve been eating an extra cookie or two, and it’s not because I’m hungry. It’s my unhealthy coping mechanism when I feel stuck.
And boy, do I ever feel stuck.
Everywhere I look people are drowning in a sea of needs, and my small contributions feel too small to be of any real help.
So, I’ve sat and pondered and prayed and then sat some more (all while noshing on a cookie or two).
Don’t misunderstand, I’m getting all the daily things done. But it feels more like rearranging chairs on the decks of the Titanic than loading people into lifeboats to save them.
In a nutshell, here’s why I’m stuck.
The world is a mess, and every fiber of my being wants to do something to help. But there are so many things to do that I’m not sure where to start. So, I keep praying and pondering and sitting in my chair.
Pass the cookies, please.
Then I had this surreal picture pop into my mind, and it brought me a lot of clarity. It’s weird, so bear with me, because I think it will help you, too.
Imagine This Surreal Scene
With neon lights blinking, taxis clamoring for space, and sirens piercing the air, imagine you’ve suddenly been transported to a bustling sidewalk of a New York City Street.
Around you is a surging sea of humanity: hurried professionals in their suits and sneakers, women with designer bags striding by in heels, and young men swaggering as they struggle to walk in their baggy jeans.
You search for a friendly face, but everyone is preoccupied; heads down, brows furrowed, and eyes fixed ahead.
It’s an urban wasteland without a patch of blue sky in sight.
The current of bodies keeps pushing you forward, and it carries you up the street until you’re finally thrust into the revolving doors of the tallest building in sight.
With a rhythmic swoosh, the doors spin, and silence descends as you stumble into a marble room.
The solemn doorman approaches and hands you a key. Floor 72. Room 2.
Stepping into the elevator, you press the button, and a feeling of uncertainty tugs at your stomach as the elevator rises. 2, 3, 4… 69, 70, 71, 72. Ding.
The doors glide open, and you ease into an empty hallway.
Room 2 lies straight ahead.
With shaking hand, you insert the key, turn it slowly, and push open the door.
Inside stands a simple metal desk, a lamp, and an empty chair. And on the desk, there lies a single note with your name at the top.
Eleven additional words follow:
“We are in a crisis situation.
I’m sending you.
Adrenaline surges through your veins, triggering a torrent of questions:
- Who wrote the note?
- What’s the crisis?
- Why me?
- How am I supposed to help?
Back to Reality
Last week, as I was pondering and praying about our current world situation, this strange picture brought clarity to me.
God’s Given Us a Note
Before the beginning of time, God wrote words of life and instructions in His Holy Word. They are addressed to you and me, His note.
The bigger version holds treasures beyond compare, but this eleven-word summary is especially relevant in 2023.
These words remind me that God is not unprepared. He has a plan. He has answers to life’s big questions and will reveal tactical insights along the way.
We Are in a Crisis
Life in the 2020’s is the crisis. A chronic, ongoing, threat-level crisis.
We live in a time of cascading change, seismic cultural shifts, and economic uncertainty, where everything we once held certain is shifting before our very eyes.
Navigating the complexities of running our businesses, ministries, and even our personal lives is uncharted territory, leaving us anxious and overwhelmed.
And the people we serve feel it. Deeply.
Their heads are down, brows are furrowed, and they’re racing through life looking for a small slice of blue sky that they don’t know how to find.
God Is Sending Us
The fact that you and I are still here and still breathing means we are a vital part of God’s rescue plan.
“For we are his creative work,
having been created in Christ Jesus for good works
that God prepared beforehand so we can do them.”
Long, long ago, before there was time, God peered into 2023, saw the gaping need, and decided to send someone to help.
You and me.
We All Have a Part to Play
But how are we supposed to help?
And specifically, I’ve been asking the Lord, what’s your plan for me?
There are so many things that I CAN’T do.
And that’s when He reminded me, He is also sending you.
“In his grace, God has given us different gifts
for doing certain things well.”
God has written a similar note to each of us, and He’s only asking each of us to do our one tiny thing.
It may not be the most visible thing, applauded thing, or world-changing thing, but God says, it is our thing.
Start Small: Start Today
The world is unraveling. It has been since Eden, but God has a beautiful and perfect plan.
We are a part of that plan. A small, but critical part.
So, as I’ve continued to wrestle this particular question to the ground, “Lord, specifically what do you want ME to do?” I’m leaning into these words…
“Do not despise these small beginnings,
for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin.”
In other words, start small.
And not surprisingly, when I stopped worrying about the overall plan and asked God to show me just one simple step to take today, He did.
In a world that’s falling apart, I can’t do everything, but I can do one thing.
Not all the things. Not the “perfect” thing. Maybe not even the best thing. But in this moment, I can do something…
I’m writing this letter to you.
What’s Your One Thing?
If you, like me, are confused and not sure what He is asking of you, try thinking smaller.
Still stuck? Go smaller still.
If you’re still not sure, make it even tinier and easier until it’s something you can and will do.
Then do it.
After all, there’s no need for God to reveal the next step, until we take this one.
Together, let’s commit to joyful obedience for ONE thing today.
This is mine. Now, it’s your turn.
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