Have you ever seen the movie The Incredibles? It’s an animated movie about a family of super heroes living undercover. The dad, Mr. Incredible, has super strength. The mom, Elastigirl, is pliable. In one scene, her two young children get into an argument at the dinner table. Mom reaches out and places a hand on each child—just as they decide to get up and chase one another around the table. Elastigirl ends up with her arms twisted around the table, but she never loses her grip on her children. Eventually, she lets go of the kids and snaps right back into her normal shape.
I feel a lot like a spiritual Elastigirl right now. God is taking me and stretching me in all kinds of strange contortions. He is teaching me to be pliable and open to things I would have never dreamed of. He is asking me to trust Him to make me into a different person with a stronger faith. Unlike Elastigirl, however, He never wants me to snap back into my original shape.
I grew up in a Christian home where I was blessed with a great foundation in Christ. I accepted Christ as my Savior at the age of six, and I never looked back. I have walked with God many years now, but I find myself questioning much of what I learned as a child.
Don’t get me wrong: I have an amazing foundation. But, I sense that God is trying to stretch my faith in new directions. I sense that there is more to the Christian life than I have experienced. I sense that God wants to do more in me and through me. I sense that God wants to build a faith that can move mountains—to build a faith that sees God do miracles in my life. I sense that God wants to do in me and through me things that only He can do.
…having a form of godliness but denying its power. 2 Timothy 3:5
At the risk of taking this verse out of context, I must say that this phrase is continually running through my mind these days. I find myself wondering every day if I have fallen into a westernized brand of Christianity that puts God in a box and limits Him. Have I lived the first half of my life with a form of godliness—living a good clean life where I read scripture and pray—and yet denying the power that is available to me?
God was actively doing miracles regularly in the Old Testament. He parted the Red Sea for Moses and the Israelites. He allowed Abraham and Sarah to become parents in their old age. He allowed the widow to pour oil until she ran out of pots to hold it. He used Elisha to raise a young boy back to life.
In the New Testament, we see Jesus himself doing miracles. He also gave power to the disciples who cast out demons and performed miracles of their own. And, Jesus said:
Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. John 14:10-12
Because Jesus went to the Father, He sent us the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit lives in us. Jesus says we will do even greater things than He did. How often do we actually see today’s Christians doing works even greater than what we see in scripture? Why don’t we see God’s miracles happening on a regular basis like they did in Bible times? His power is available to us.
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know…his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead… Ephesians 1:18-21
God has been stretching my faith for a number of years, taking me to a deeper level than I ever dreamed possible. I now sense that He wants to continue stretching me by leading me to a place where I see Him doing things only He can do. I have lived my life seeing answered prayers, enjoying fellowship with my Savior. But, I believe He wants to start pouring out His power in my life in ways that give Him all the glory. He wants to do things in my life that I could never take the credit for because they are impossible for me as a human to accomplish such things.
What does He want to do? I’m not completely sure what this journey will entail, but let me start with one small example. I purchased a car in May. I don’t like debt, and I would love to have my car paid off. I have crunched numbers and discovered that with some manipulation I could pay off both vehicles in three years. I have asked repeatedly for God’s wisdom.
God said, “I want you debt free in two years.”
As I looked at my finances, I questioned God. Paying off my debt in two years is impossible—for me. And, God seemed to say, “Exactly. I want to do something only I can do.”
So, my children and I have committed to praying that God would pay off our debt in two years or less. I don’t know how He is going to do it, and we’ve not made any progress yet. But, I believe that God has directed me to pray in this manner. If He is directing me to pray in this manner, I believe He will answer.
Every area of my life seems to be revolving around this concept—that God wants to do things bigger than me. My heart’s desire is to be a full-time writer and speaker—sharing the hope and encouragement of a God who is faithful to rebuild broken lives. I have contemplated talking to people who are living the life I desire to get tips on how to get there. Instead, I hear God saying, “Just wait for me.” Again, He wants to get the glory for building a ministry only He could create.
Over and over, in every area of my life, I find God saying, “Wait for me to act. Be still and let me fight this battle.” I think if I take matters into my own hands, I would probably sell myself short. I would miss out on greater opportunities because God says that He is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us (Ephesians 3:20).
God is simply taking me to a new phase in this journey—a phase in which I must step back and trust God to act. I am finding myself in situations where God is saying, “These are things for which it is going to be difficult for you to trust. These are things for which you must completely put your faith in me. These are things over which you have no control.”
I don’t know what my life will look like in two years, but I trust my Savior to lead me there one day at a time. I’m not sure what my Savior will ask of me, but I will obey. I’m not sure how God will accomplish what He has laid on my heart, but I am excited to see His power poured out in my life.
“Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.” Joshua 3:5