“…I do nothing on my own, but say only what the Father taught me. And the one who sent me is with me – He has not deserted me…”
I read these words and they flew up against a hard bent within me. The always-trying-to-be-enough bent that drives me to over-achieve and prove myself and never disappoint and never need help and never fall short.
But here it is from his own mouth. The One who calls me to follow his example in all things did NOTHING on his own.
That whole passage instructing us to stay in step with him, abide in him, draw from his strength, LET HIM produce his life in us instead of trying to conjure up the willpower to be good? He lived it before he asked us to follow.
This crazy life where he faced hunger and insult, homelessness and heartache, betrayal and abandonment, loss and enormous pressure to compromise, weariness and stress. He didn’t do any of it on his own. He spoke the words he was given and walked where he was led and received everything from his Father. And it was a day in, day out diagram for how in the world we are supposed do this life.
He does not want me to try it by myself.
He wants me to ask my Father for what I need. To call on my Savior for strength to take on each thing, big or small. To lean hard on his Spirit for the wisdom and guidance for each choice, as enormous or inconsequential as it may seem.
In big steps, tense discussions, inflammatory situations, choking grief, huge risks, daunting unknowns where I have no idea how to move forward. And also in just the challenging, stressful days where a crammed schedule and not enough sleep make me fear that I will give in to my irritable, selfish, harsh flesh.
May I not live in fear of the damage I might do or the damage I may sustain, but may I step forward in confidence that He is with me, giving me everything I need to face what this day holds, and He has not asked me to know all the answers or to handle one single part of it on my own.
I need to remember. I need to remember because when I feel like I’ve lost my bearings, I hang on tight. I cling to my ideas, my ways of doing things, my expectations of timing.
Those are the wrong things to cling to.
Lord, help me cling to you. When I feel a wave of confusion or frustration, may I reach for Jesus rather than trying to rally in my own strength.
You are enough. I don’t have to be enough for this or for what’s next or for anyone else because here you are with me, just as your Father was with you, never deserting or abandoning you.
You are enough for this. You are enough for me.
“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.”
“…It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
“God has said, “I will never fail you.
I will never abandon you.”
So we can say with confidence,
“The Lord is my helper,
so I will have no fear.
What can mere people do to me?”