This semester has been the most difficult semester so far as far as managing my time. I've felt overwhelmed and completely helpless at times. Quite often I've felt like a terrible student, a terrible friend, a terrible Christian and a terrible RA (resident adviser. I am a leader of 5 girls in my building). It's been such a struggle to just get through a week at times. God has been teaching me a lot during this season of stress. It's okay to have nothing to give. Quite often I've had nothing to give to others or to God. This past week especially, I felt like I had nothing to give, but everything was due and I was leading worship at chapel one day and I was going somewhere that weekend to preach to a youth group. I kept asking God to help me to accomplish all I needed to. He did, but not in the way I expected.
You see, something else God has been teaching me is how to be positive and how to counteract the negativity in myself and in others. I've begun to realize when I am negative or when I take on the negativity of others, I'm exhausted. It takes energy to be negative! But when I am positive, it surprisingly the opposite! It gives me the energy to keep going even when I think I can't. When people would ask me how my week was going I found myself saying, "I'm really stressed, but I know that God is going to come through for me in my weakest moments. Everything is going to be okay!" Wow! God is doing something deep in my heart. I normally would be freaking out, but instead I was declaring the truth of God. This one point last week I was going to a prayer meeting and I asked God if it was okay if they didn't ask me to lead worship that night. I had nothing to give. I was exhausted. It was as if this little voice said to me, "But when you have nothing to give, that's when I move." Sure enough, I arrived and I was asked to lead worship. I wasn't too nervous because I knew the pressure wasn't on me. I just needed to be a willing vessel that God could work through.
Towards the end of the week, I realized I had to preach soon. I was so nervous, but I kept giving it to God. I heard that a lot of the youth were exchange students from China. This made me excited, but even more nervous. Would they understand what I was saying? When I got there people were telling me a lot of them barely spoke English and that I need to use simple words and talk slowly. I became more nervous. My boyfriend reminded me of the passage I was preaching from. Romans 8:1-9 talks about living in the spirit verses living in the flesh. I got his point. I needed to not rely on my own strength, but trust that the Spirit would work through me. I needed to trust that when I am weak, He is strong. I preached, and it went great! In the beginning they were not focused, but suddenly I had all their eyes on me, and I knew the Holy Spirit was speaking through me. Not only did this teach me to rely on the Spirit more, but it also prepared me for next year. I'm planning on going to China next year. I love the irony. God really knows what He is doing!
So this is an encouragement to you no matter where you are in life. Rely on God. It's okay if you have nothing to offer. He likes that. He likes taking nothing and making something! If I recall correctly, we are made from dirt. So how much more can He use a child who has nothing but himself to offer?