What do I have to offer? Have you ever thought that? I have. I’ve responded to the question in several different extremes over the course of my life.
I (Tracy) have been self-deprecating as I thought: not good enough, not qualified, not a good option for God and what He has in mind. Fear and its close cousin, insecurity inhibited my ability to proceed with God’s plan. Over time, I have learned to do things afraid. I’m grateful God has taught me to do so. I don’t need to play into the enemy’s hand and sit on the sidelines watching other people do God’s will. I want to be in the game-His game where He works all things together for the good of those who love Him.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.─Romans 8:28 NIV
I’ve learned He will use me in spite of my limitations. Perhaps, He uses me more because of them. I’m miserably flawed even as I am marvelously made in His image. Without Him I’d be a hot mess. With Him I am an heir to the throne capable of all He calls me to. When I waiver in that, He is faithful to remind me.
Remember who you are. You are My daughter. I delight in you. You please Me. You don’t have to be perfect. You are being perfected by Me. You can do whatever I ask, because you can do all things I ask of you in My name. I have not set you up for failure. I may ask you to walk through the fiery furnace as I refine you, but like blown glass you are made more and more beautiful each day you rest in Me. You are moldable, conforming to Me and My will.
I’ve also taken the question to the other extreme: I’ve got this all under control. I’ll just put on my cape and come to the rescue. That response was my standard operating procedure before I knew Jesus. But even after I was saved, I fell into the trap of Tracy as savior.
Both responses are a bad idea.
God forged a different response as I considered What do I have to offer? And in my response, I get to see the growth God has brought in my life for His glory. Transformation takes time. When transformation takes hold, all that hard work is worth it.
As recently as last night when I contemplated this piece inquiring of God where He wanted to take it, He impressed on my heart two things I have to offer.
- My presence
- My Jesus
Little-did-I-know He would ask me to do that in a big way only moments later. Never mind I had a writing deadline a few short hours away, I was being called into action.
As I sat on the couch with a woman in desperate need of the love and healing power that can only come from Jesus, I knew this is what Jesus referred to when He told me in advance what I have to offer:
- My presence
- My Jesus
Exhausted, I sat and listened to hard things. It’s never comfortable listening to someone else’s pain, not knowing how to make it better. That feels impossible anyhow─making it better. Some things are beyond a kiss-it-and-make-it-feel-better-I’ll-put-a-band-aid-on-it boo boo. Some things are just bad. Some things are unexplainable, beyond my comprehension. But in sitting listening, soothing where I could, extending compassion, asking questions when appropriate, I can offer my presence. Offering silence sometimes the very best thing.
I can sit there in spite of how tired I am. I can sit there in spite of not knowing what to say much of the time, waiting expectantly for the Lord to give me the words when I am without them. My presence was the gift I could give in that moment.
Giving our presence is costly, but I know God sees it when no one else does. I know He sees the person a sacrifice is being made for. I know He sees me in all of it, and He sustains me to be able to offer my presence. Without Him, I’d melt into a big blob of glass when the heat turns up.
But my Jesus won’t let that happen. My Jesus is making glass art in me and in the one I sat next to on the couch. And into you as well. Blown glass, poked, prodded, heated, and molded into something beautiful.
When people see the fragile glass image, color streaked, obviously stretched beyond comfort yet still holding form even as it is changing form, they get to see my Jesus.
My Jesus is what really matters. When I’ve got nothing left, HE IS WHAT I HAVE TO OFFER. Empty, He pours in so I can pour out. Impossible becomes possible. Hope and healing happen where once there was only rocky soil unable for good things to take root.
The very best thing I can offer someone is My Jesus. He is the very best thing that I must always point to. He makes all the difference in a person’s healing journey. All.
I realize I might be sounding a little like the disciple John in this piece, referring to Jesus as mine. But He is. And I need Him to be.
He’s yours too, able to step into your fiery furnace and create a beautiful blown glass piece of art if you let Him. So I offer to you the best thing I have to offer: My Jesus.
Join the conversation here or on our Facebook page.