Do you remember those rubber band balls people made for their desk? A pile of them on my desk just seemed wasted because they did not get used for their intended purpose. We started them with only a few rubber bands, and the ball started small. We added more in hopes of making the biggest one in the office. This process helped to stretch out the elastics, so they did not fold up the stack of paper we wanted to hold together. After a while, the rubber became so stretched out that they became useless.
Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 (ESV)
Recently, I started thinking that my faith is like one of those rubber band. God wants to stretch me to fit His needs. And, just like those rubber bands, we are not useful to God if He does not stretch us for His purposes. We are never too old or too young to get extended, and pulled for God. Throughout the Bible, we see examples of God growing people outside of their comfort zones. Moses felt comfortable tending his father-in-law’s flocks, but God had bigger plans for him. Paul followed the strict rules of the Jewish religion and felt joy in persecuting those that did not do as he did. God had other plans for Paul that took him outside of his comfort zone. These are just a few of the examples.
But, what about us and our faith? Does God have bigger plans for each of us? In Jeremiah 29:11, God tells us that He has plans for each of us. From my own experience, I believe God does want to stretch me. I never planned on working with orphans until God used me on a mission trip. The thoughts of writing a book never occurred to me until God expanded my faith. And, the fear of speaking in front of large groups keep me from trying until God showed me His plan.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)
Dear Heavenly Father, please show us the areas of our faith that need stretching. Lord, please use us to accomplish Your will in Your world today. Thank you for all that you provide and for all you do. In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen