The following is an excerpt from the chapter on Humility in my book, Charter of the Christian Faith.
Years ago, Tom Whittlesey, a life-long friend and author in Tulsa, Oklahoma, wrote and gave me a proverb that helps me stay on track:
“God is not impressed with our ability; God is not disappointed with our inability; God is only gratified with our availability.”
With that in mind, think about the following people who were available to God.
- Noah wasn’t a ship builder, but he obeyed God and saved mankind from total annihilation.
- Abraham was trained to be an idol-maker but became the father of the Faith.
- Sarah was Abraham’s pampered half-sister, but she became the mother of the Jewish nation.
- Moses grew up in the Egyptian palace, became a general in the Egyptian army, and committed murder. Nevertheless, he prompted Pharaoh to set the people free.
- Rahab was an innkeeper, and perhaps a prostitute; but she assisted the Israelites as they crossed the Jordan River. Then marrying an Israelite, she became one of the ancestresses of Jesus.
- King David committed adultery and ordered a murder, but he wrote many of the Psalms while making Israel a mighty nation.
- Deborah, the judge, was not a soldier, but she gave Barak the battle plan.
- Peter was an uncouth, impulsive fisherman, but he is the one who declared Jesus to be the Christ, the Son of the Living God! and became a leader in the early Church.
- Saul arrested Christians to be tortured or killed, but he became the Apostle Paul, ministered to the gentile nations, and wrote at least thirteen of the New Testament books.
- Martin Luther was a depressed monk, but he rediscovered, “By faith you are saved; not by works lest any man should boast.”
- Corrie ten Boom was a watchmaker’s daughter; but surviving the holocaust during World War II, she shared her testimony of love and forgiveness around the world.
- Billy Graham was raised on a dairy farm, but he took the Bible and the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world.
Did you notice how each of the people on that list helped build the kingdom of God? They were not trained to do what made them famous, and all of them would have remained in the shadows of history had they not obeyed God. However, because they responded to the Lord, their influence is still being felt in the world, and that is one way by which they are rulers in God’s Kingdom.
Because of God’s promises, their rulership has been increased in heaven. The principle is in Luke 19:17 where Jesus was telling a story. “The king said to the servant, ‘You are a good servant. Since I can trust you with small things, I will let you rule over ten of my cities” (NCV). When we humbly avail ourselves to the Lord, and obey Him, God is not hesitant to expand our reputation in order to build His Kingdom. Let me repeat: God is not impressed with our ability; God is not disappointed with our inability; God is only gratified with our availability.
God created us to rule with Him. His response to our humble availability is likely to be, I am indeed pleased. After a maturing process, you shall become a ruler in My Kingdom, beginning in this earthly life.
Read more in Charter of the Christian Faith – available at Amazon.com.