Recently I wrote about Jesus’ words, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.” (Mark 16:15) , and the impact those words were having on me. They were words that were settling in my spirit, my soul. I was being brought to a place of heavy reflection on how I was living my life. Was I proclaiming the gospel to His creation? If not…what was holding me back?
Over this last month, I have meditated on those words. I have been reflecting on my life, my words and my actions. It was becoming increasingly clear that my life did not completely reflect the commissioning words of Jesus.
I began praying for God to show me how to look beyond myself and see only what He sees – a world desperately crying out for a Rescuer. I began to pray for a heart that breaks for what breaks His. I began to pray; I did not know what else to do, but, pray.
One of the major barriers, for me, was the restrictive mindset I was letting dictate my identity. An identity as a daughter of the King. An identity of one who has scandalously been set free through an undeserved grace. An identity that has found redemption. An identity of one who has been called, “to go”.
Letting go of the “just”.
“Just”. It is one little word; it is one huge extinguisher to the spreading of the Gospel flames. It has been my barrier. It is the word that can suppress most people (me) – “I’m just a(n) ___________.
This word. It is – an excuse, a fallback, a short-sighted mindset. Most of all, it is me retreating from the front lines of battle. I live in a world that has evil waging war on all that inhabit it; a world that is stained with sin. Yet, there I hide myself in the safe shadows with “just” wrapped around me like a thick coat shielding a bitterly cold wind.
I pray for those that are risking their very lives to spread the Gospel. I pray for those that are being forced to look into the eyes of evil and feel its very breath upon them because of their relationship with Jesus. I pray for those around me that are missing out on His redeeming grace. I give to further the cause of those being the hands and feet of Jesus. I fan the flames of the Gospel at a safe distance.
I keep myself from inching closer to the front lines of battle by letting my insecurities hold me back.
One thing that has become increasingly clear to me is that there is no “just” when living for Him. The pages of the Bible are filled with examples of God using people for His glory – people from all walks of life; people from all stations in life. There is the ugly and unwanted wife. The lustful and disobedient king. The insecure and timid girl. The tarnished and broken harlot. The greedy and selfish tax collector. The calloused and hardworking fishermen. The unkept and burly wilderness-man who was paving the way for Jesus himself.
The examples can continue on and on. All these people, no matter who they are or what they were in life, had one thing in common. A need, a desperate need for a Rescuer. Just like me. Just like you. Yet, God chose them. He used them. They yielded their hearts and their lives to Him. They did not let the “just” keep them from the path set before them.
Back to me.
“Just”. It is a word that is hard to overcome. It is a word that has held me back for too long. It is a word that no longer applies.
When Jesus commissioned these words “to go”, He did not do so with the expectation of us going at it alone. He goes before us and He goes with us. His fingerprint is on every situation and thing that takes place in our lives. Those who are in Him, have Him with them. Always. Because of that…we can do extraordinary things for the kingdom of God.
From the poor and struggling student to the great and powerful leader who reigns over a nation – all can be used to spread the good news of Jesus. That means you and that means me. There is a world that is literally dying; a world dying without ever having the chance to know that there is a God who loves them. A Savior who died to rescue them. A Spirit who is here to guide them.
“Just” cannot hold us back any longer. We need to – 1. Love more (the unceasing kind of love through Jesus). 2. Be more (be the hands and feet of Jesus). 3. Do more (carry out the Gospel message to all people). It is no longer okay to sit back and hide behind the “just”; It is time – to go.