I hope you all had a fabulous 4th of July and weekend! Here in Minnesota, we’ve had some HOT weather, which to me means you’re either in the AC or the water. On the 4th, that meant I was mostly in the water. I think it has to do with the fact that I was only 6-months-old the first time I was in a pool…it’s just in my blood. 🙂
Raise your hand if you’ve ever felt inadequate? Unqualified? Incapable? Ill-equipped? (I’m obviously big into raising hands these days, huh? Lol) Last week, I had an early morning meeting (comes with working with a bunch of Europeans and a 7-hour time difference…gotta love Google+ hangouts, it’s brilliant for online meetings of more than 3 people and the quality is actually better than Skype most of the time) and I had a hunch I might be leading the meeting. Sure enough, my boss wanted me to lead the meeting. Now, typically I really enjoy leading meetings, but this time I felt super unqualified and inadequate. All the other people in our meeting had had years more experience than I had, were older than me and at the time of the meeting, I hadn’t yet been able to establish solid relationships with all of them. So all of this led me to feeling quite out of my comfort zone and like I could score nothing but zeros from the judges.
In ministry, more often than not we find ourselves in situations where we are leading people with more experience than us, are much older or younger than us, from different cultures than us, with different backgrounds and experiences than us, and a heap load of other things that can all too often leave us feeling like we shouldn’t be the ones leading. (On a total aside, this is actually a really good place for us to be because it pushes us to our knees and towards God, exactly where God wants us. 🙂 )
I’m still reading Exodus (it’s a long one and I have been going a chapter at a time seeing as there is SO MUCH in that book that is seriously thought-provoking) and when reading Exodus 29, I read these words “…the Altar will become soaked in holiness—anyone who so much as touches the Altar will become holy.” Re-read those words, “…the Altar will become soaked in holiness—anyone who so much as touches the Altar will become holy.” The altar was the place of sacrifice, but ultimately, it was God who made the altar holy, and it was God who made people holy in order to serve. At the end of Exodus 29 God says this, “I’ll move in and live with the Israelites. I’ll be their God. They’ll realize that I am their God who brought them out of the land of Egypt so that I could live with them. I am God, your God.” Selah.
Here’s what I think is so critical for each of us leaders to get from what God is saying here: back then it was true and today it’s still true, WHENEVER we encounter God, the Holy of Holies, we are made holy, each and everyone of us. That’s all there is to it. God makes us holy. God moves in and lives with us. If you have made yourself available and are present with God, God is there with you. God’s there in the boardroom, in the small group setting, in the staff meeting, up front with you on stage, standing with you at the microphone, sitting beside you while you’re on the phone, in the conference room during that hard confrontation, etc.
So when we start feeling unqualified or inadequate for something that God has called us to, we must stop (drop and roll…sorry, that was the first thing that came to mind) and remind ourselves that WE ARE HOLY if we have been in contact with the living God. And God has moved in and is living with us. How much more adequate and qualified do we need to be?!
My prayer this week is that each of us would truly let that sink in and that we would wrestle with what it means that we are holy if we have encountered God, and what it means that God has moved in with us, and how our leadership would look (should look?) if this was (which it is) true. 🙂
(Connect with Alicia on Google+)