Did you ever doubt God’s ability to transform your life? I certainly did.
Be on alert. Our enemy is crafty and he uses people to plant seeds of doubt and steal our dreams.
In high school…
We had gathered outdoors in the patio for a short recess, and held an informal conversation about college application and scholarship opportunities with the school’s guidance counselor. Everyone was inspired about future possibilities and asked relevant questions. Staff acknowledged everyone’s concerns. I was intrigued so I listened attentively. When our morning break ended, everyone rushed to their scheduled classes except me. I was unassured of the aptitudes needed to succeed in college so I solicited staff’s recommendations for a tentative career plan.
After a brief silence, she answered gently “I don’t see you in college…”
“Ugh? Did I hear correctly?” I silently asked myself, was downhearted then walked away in disbelief.
“Was I not good enough for college?” it repeatedly echoed in my mind.
Discouragement settled in my heart soon thereafter. I never inquired again about college admission, SAT prep courses or career choices. Unintentionally, the self-deprecating message ‘not good enough’ replayed in my mind intermittently for almost three decades.
I wrestled in learning the nuances of the English language when I relocated to the United States at a young age. Mom secured tutors for Algebra, Geometry and Statistics. She even enlisted me in a Reading Comprehension, after-school program in an attempt to boost SAT scores. I didn’t appreciate History or Science. I would easily be sidetracked or bored in classes or would lose interest on a subject matter (except the Arts). If you would have inquired about a career plan, I would have given you a list of character flaws instead. I sure hustled all the way until the last exam in graduate school. No subject matter or licensing board exam was effortless.
“Academic life was ferocious!”
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” John 10:10 NIV
When we trust in God’s precepts, our minds are renewed and our souls are refreshed. Our God then rewrites the text of our lives leading us to unimaginable heights both in our personal and/or career dreams. (Psalm 18:24 MSG)
God is our strength when our flesh or hearts have failed. He never abandons us (Psalm 73:26).
I often prayed, “Lord, help me… I’m overwhelmed” He was my refuge and fortitude and He will always be.
God’s Grace is sufficient.
Dad loved me unconditionally, supported all of my career endeavors, and highlighted every strength, skill and ability he would notice. His enthusiasm and optimism played a key role in my career development. Because of Dad’s encouragement, I mastered academic challenges, and even earned ‘distinction’ at the end of graduate school. When I was undecided on my college major, Dad suggested piano performance. He envisioned his beloved daughter becoming an international, concert pianist. Nevertheless, the intensity of ‘performance’ anxiety in piano recitals and the demands of practice drills in preparation to Guild competitions were substantial.
“I sure miss daddy today!”
By breaking down challenging tasks into manageable action steps, developing effective study habits, and learning from past mistakes, I overcame hurdles in both my personal life and career development. God granted me the confidence to overcome insecurities, fear and doubt.
In Wilkes’ book titled “Jesus on Leadership”, he noted ‘God grants confidence to those who trust him. Divinely directed confidence is the certainty that God has created you, bought you through the death of His Son, and called you out to join in the worldwide mission of hope.’
I trusted Jesus to lead the way so I never lost hope and flourished in every leadership role I had. In Christ, my spirit was renewed every day, a steadfast character was built, and spiritual maturity evolved over the years.
The unexpected materialized twenty years later…
I poured freshly-made, Colombian coffee in a mug, grabbed the wireless, headphones out of the leather tote then rushed to the home office at sunrise, “Lord help me be alert, organized and articulate in today’s conference call” I whispered to myself.
As I dialed the conference number, I meditated on His promise, “Now to him who 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 (NIV). It had been five months since the initial meeting with the State Commissioner. I was astonished about the progress we had made so far in previous conference calls. I was also invigorated when the Commissioner’s genuine appreciation for Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) was initially displayed. ABA is a treatment modality for children and adolescents who are diagnosed with intellectual disability and/or pervasive developmental disorder.
Never in my wildest dreams, did I expect to be in a regional leadership role much less conversing with a State Commissioner at 8 a.m. on a monthly basis!
God’s vision is bountiful.
Even before we were ever conceived in our mother’s womb, our Creator fearfully and wonderfully equipped us for the future (Psalms 139:14). We are His masterpiece regardless of what others may think of us today. In Christ, the enemy is defeated. The Lord orchestrates all our circumstances to work together for our welfare. His plan always prevails regardless of our struggles, character deficiencies or self-doubt.