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God’s timing is killing me right now. Killing me!

Here’s the deal–for the last several months I’ve been planning a retreat to the beach for all my college students. I picked the location very intentionally, and the whole weekend was designed to be the ideal kickoff for the year. We were supposed to go this weekend.

Unfortunately, tropical storm Hanna had similar plans. Like me, she decided that the North Carolina coast was the perfect spot to spend her weekend. But there isn’t enough room for both of us so I got the boot. Now I’m scrambling for Plan B.

It’s because of stuff like this that I can really hate leading a ministry. There is a LOT of pressure. All the responsibility eventually rests on your shoulders, and if things get screwed up or fail, it’s all your fault. At times, the intensity of the burden feels nearly suffocating.

But the interesting thing is that in those times when I feel most anxious, most fearful, and most prone to quit, I feel closest to God, like I am in the center of His will. It is in those times that I am most compelled to rely on Him.

In those moments, my limitations become undeniably obvious, and I am forced to turn to the One who has no limitations at all. When I realize my inadequacies, I can surrender the situation into the Hands of Him who works mightily through all things.

So while my immediate response to adversity is to retreat, such experiences have taught me to do just the opposite. We should always do MORE than we are initially inclined to take on. By that I don’t mean that we should fill our schedules with an endless number of things that spread us so thin that we can’t do anything well.

When I challenge you to do “more,” I mean “more” in a qualitative, not quantitative, sense. Take on the impossible! Challenge yourself with tasks that are only attainable with the power of God at work. Otherwise, when you cower in the face of such opportunities, you sentence yourself to a mundane life of spiritual mediocrity.

But God has not called us to mediocrity. He’s called us to be dreamers of big dreams, to aim for more than we could have ever imagined, and to believe that God will always exceed our expectations. But in order to do this, we must leave our meager, human-sized goals behind, and instead strive for something more.

What are you working toward? Even if you’re in full-time ministry, it’s still easy to scale down your possibilities to fit within the boundaries of human limitation. But fight that temptation. No matter where you are, do more. Always do more. It can be unbelievably hard at times, but it’s also the most exhilarating and satisfying place to be. Nothing compares with knowing that the Holy Spirit is working through you, thanks to no ability of your own. That, I think, is a real encounter with God.

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