Have you ever questioned your inadequacy for serving the Lord? Maybe you feel like you’re too far gone in your continual failures, you are never accepted by others despite your efforts to show love and put forth a wonderful personality, thus you seem to run into rejection everywhere you turn, you can’t seem to be able do anything right with parenting, work, relationships, personal healthcare, or daily responsibilities no matter how hard you try, or maybe you feel you’re too broken physically, mentally, or emotionally to be able to be entrusted with tasks from the Lord. Throwing in the towel, retreating into solitude, and loathing the very person that God made us to be can be much more enticing actions than pressing forward through our inadequacies to still carry out and complete the good works that God laid our beforehand for us to do.
"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." ~ Ephesians 2:10 (ESV)
Almost daily, I feel immensely inadequate. Specifically, I feel that I am far too broken physically and fail too much despite my best efforts to ever be used well for the Lord. My inadequacy intensifies as my physical disabilities and failures increase. Just yesterday, I was so frustrated with how inadequate I felt. I was trying to complete some work tasks, but was struggling to focus, felt underserving of my role, no longer possessed ability to serve the Lord fully and vivaciously like I once did, and struggled with the basic tasks of reading and writing due to pain. Here I was feeling utterly exhausted just from getting ready in the morning, was constantly dropping things on the floor from poor dexterity and pain, and needed help with the simplest of tasks such as wheeling my wheelchair and folding my blanket. If you looked up the word “inadequate” in the dictionary, my name and photo to accompany would be next to it. I was extremely disheartened and had streaks of sourness in my heart. As I felt stuck in sadness and frustration, I turned to Scripture to guide me and soothe my restless soul. As I was thumbing through my Bible, I happened to flip to the book of Exodus where my eyes fell upon the passage of Exodus 4:11-12.
“But Moses said to the Lord, ‘Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.' Then the Lord said to him, ‘Who has made man's mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.'" ~ Exodus 4:11-12 (ESV)
This verse was so uplifting to my weary heart. Moses too felt incredibly inadequate to be the Lord’s spokesperson to the Israelites as he struggle with speech and lacked eloquence. In response to Moses’ lament, the Lord had a wonderful retort, “Who made your body, despite its brokenness? I did!” The Lord never required eloquence when He gave Moses his role of leadership, and He told Moses something extremely vital that I want to zoom in on: God would not only teach and guide Moses, but He would also be with the broken body part, his mouth, that was the catalyst to Moses’ inadequacy.
This passage taught me that no matter what my inadequacy is with which I am struggling, Jesus will be with what is broken , as well as be with me as He teaches and guides me in the way that He desires for me to go, using my brokenness for His glory. Furthermore, He created every single body part that feels too far gone for usefulness, He knows about the damage that each part of my body endures, and He is not swayed. The Lord does not lay out His will for us, then force us to struggle through it alone. He is with us all the way, never forsaking us. He is already fully aware of each one of our inadequacies, and neither ourself nor any inadequacy we possess is powerful enough to rattle the Lord Almighty and detract ability to be used for His glory. He is the potter who can work with any type of clay or vessel, whether it's crumbling broken or whole. He molds us to be more like Him, and uses our broken parts to refine our character and reflect Him. We can set false job requirements, such as Moses thinking eloquence was needed for the task He was called to, but God, being the loving Shepherd He is, will dismantle those and gently, yet firmly, guide us. God both wrote the job He has for us, laid out any requirements, and created us in His image, and all we need to do is submit to His good and perfect will. What we see as broken, God sees as vital. There is such great beauty in brokenness, if only we can look at it from God’s angle versus our warped viewpoint, embrace the brokenness, and ask the Lord to show us how He wants us to be used, inadequacy and all. To Jesus, our inadequacy is indispensable to the fulfillment of His good and perfect will.
“On the contrary, the parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty, which our more presentable parts do not require. But God has so composed the body, giving greater honor to the part that lacked it…” ~ 1 Corinthians 12:22-24 (ESV)