Prayer in Times of Inadequacy


We may not feel adequate for God's calling, but He will strengthen and equip us.

Nehemiah 2:1-10

Nehemiah’s heart was burdened when he heard about the desperate condition of the exiled Jews who had returned to Jerusalem (Neh. 1:3-4). Once the Lord had Nehemiah’s attention, He could reveal what He wanted the man to do.

Scripture doesn’t spell out Nehemiah’s reaction on realizing that he was to be a part of the solution, but we can imagine that a sense of inadequacy probably engulfed him. How could he possibly help? He wasn’t even near Jerusalem, and as a servant of the king, he didn’t have the freedom to just pack up and leave.

But whenever the Lord puts a burden on our heart, He will open a door for us to accomplish His will. In this case, God used Nehemiah’s sad expression and desperate prayer to prepare a pagan king to send him on the mission.

How do you respond when you sense the Lord is calling you to a task that seems beyond your abilities? Do you list all the reasons why you can’t possibly do it? God already knows everything about you and the situation. He’s not asking your permission to proceed; rather, He is calling you to move forward with faith in Him. You can refuse, but you risk missing out on the blessings of a life lived in obedience to Him.

The Lord will equip you for whatever He calls you to do. And because the Holy Spirit dwells within every believer, we have everything we need to fulfill our divine mission. Instead of allowing inadequacy to deter you from obeying, let it drive you to your knees so you can depend on God’s insight and power.

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