Now you have every spiritual gift you need as you eagerly wait for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 1:7 (NLT)

Feeling inadequate?

One time I was coaching basketball. It was one of the first games of the season and the first game of ‘school ball’ for the girls on my team. Early in the game one of the kids who’d shown some real potential in practice got the ball just outside the lane. She had an open shot at the basket, but looked to pass the ball off to one of her teammates, all of whom were well guarded. I called to her from the bench and said, “Shoot the ball!”

It was as if the thought had never occurred to her. She looked at the basket tentatively and then threw up a shot that hit nothing but net. That was over 15 years ago now and I still remember the look of jubilation, shock and excitement in her face. Later she told me she didn’t think she could make the basket. She went on to be one of my top scorers.

So what kept her from shooting the ball in a game when she did it often in practice? A feeling of inadequacy. I knew she had the skills and ability. I’d seen it in practice. She on the other hand had herself believing that her skill level wasn’t adequate.

The most successful people in the world are those who overcome their feelings of inadequacy and move forward in spite of them. They see a problem as a challenge, not an obstacle. They have no time for the reasons that something can’t be done, the look for ways it CAN be done.

When Jesus left the disciples on the hillside outside Jerusalem he reminded them of their challenge while he was gone. They would be his witnesses. This bunch of uneducated, obscure men and women were left with the challenge of starting a whole new movement. But he didn’t leave them without power. He didn’t leave them without the gifts they would need to accomplish the task of building relationships and teaching about him.

Paul says, “Now you have every spiritual gift you need.”

Few outside ministry realize the huge feelings of inadequacy we in ministry face every week. Our reminder, whether our ministry is up front or in the corner; at the church or in the workplace; as a career person or a stay-at-home parent is this. You have all the gifts you need to accomplish your task. Go in the power of the Holy Spirit and act within your giftedness to do the work of reconciliation.

PRAYER: Father, even though I ‘know’ you have empowered me, I still feel weak. I still fight the false feelings of inadequacy. Help me to live in the power of your Spirit and the realm of my giftedness in Jesus name, Amen.