Twenty years ago, I was sure of what I wanted to do. I had fallen in love with gospel music, had been to a few concerts, and met and talked with just about all of my gospel music heroes. So THAT was what I wanted to do with my life. I was one of the ministers of music at the church, the choir director, and I had started writing my own songs. After I graduated high school, I formed a group and we started performing around town; and was elated to be invited to sing in a town 20 miles away, at a revival. We did our thing, and a common experience happened to us. The preacher began to “prophesy”, saying that we were going to bless millions with our music. He asked who wrote the songs, and I raised my hand. He said, “Son you have an awesome gift that will bless people all over the world.”
This bit of information was all the confirmation I needed. I was ready to boldly pursue a gospel music career. But then something happened that I wasn’t expecting. God called me to preach instead.
It wasn’t like I heard an audible voice from the sky or anything, but I had this undeniable urge to teach what I had learned and seen in scripture. I didn’t know quite what to do with this feeling, because my dad is a preacher and a pastor, and neither was something I ever wanted to do. But this preaching thing was pulling on me hard. It made me uncomfortable. I gave God all the excuses: I don’t know what to say … people won’t listen to me … I’m so terribly shy. I was even so bold as to tell God I didn’t want to do it! I wanted to be the next Fred Hammond. But God’s call would not let up.
Coming face to face with God’s plan for me didn’t fill me with confidence. Instead it left a huge pit in my belly. I knew I wasn’t good enough to do what He compelling me to do. I wasn’t groomed for this. I wasn’t prepared for this. But I had to do it anyway. To this day I still feel the exact same way. I have been preaching now, for 17 years and pastoring for 12 years. Add to that, writing for over 4 years, and dabbling into other forms of digital and print media. I still get nervous every time I stand to teach, or click to share what I’ve written; feeling butterflies in my stomach. But despite my insecurities, God continues to compel me and I can’t help but to answer. I am still in awe of His call.
Perhaps you’re like me. Maybe you feel unworthy or unqualified. Maybe you’re even terrified, standing and trembling at the call of God. But be encouraged. God knows exactly who He is beckoning. It is His Spirit and His power working through you, and that is an awesome feeling: knowing that He desires to use “lil ‘ole me”. God’s plan for you will always be better than what you have devised for yourself. So even if it makes you nervous, lean into His promise and plan for your life.
“In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. And the foundations of the thresholds trembled at the voice of him who called out, while the temple was filling with smoke.
Then I said, ‘Woe is me, for I am (undone)!’
Then I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?’
Then I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’
He said, ‘Go…'” (Isaiah 6:1, 4-5a, 8-9a, New American Standard Bible)
© 2015 Team Murph Publishing/DJoaquin Publishing, All Rights Reserved
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“Butterflies” was written by Andre Harris and Marsha Ambrosius. Produced by Micheal Jackson and Andre Harris. Performed by Micheal Jackson. Released 2002.