You Can Do It
Bible Reading: Hosea 2:20
I will be faithful to you and make you mine, and you will finally know me as Lord. Hosea 2:20
Remember Joanna? When you understand her background, it’s no surprise she feels like a slug who messes up everything wherever she goes. Joanna hardly remembered her birth father, who died when she was two. Joanna’s stepfather, Buck, was a hardworking provider, but he was also a demanding perfectionist who pushed Joanna to be the best at everything she tried. His prime method of motivation was humiliation. If she didn't make an all-out effort, Buck mocked her.
Joanna grew up with an I-can’t-do-anything-right attitude burned into her brain. Flustered under pressure to succeed, she failed to keep her first two jobs. She has managed to keep a low-stress, low-pay job for ten years, but her performance is below average. She can’t see herself for who she really is-a competent person loved by God regardless of accomplishments.
You might feel incompetent for some of the same reasons as Joanna. First, people can feel incompetent when they don’t get the encouragement they need from others. Always being criticized, blamed, or humiliated for what you do shakes your confidence and crushes your motivation. Why try if you can’t do anything but fail?
Second, people might feel incompetent when their need for support from others goes unmet. Everyone needs a burden-bearer, someone who will come alongside and share the weight of a difficult task or trial.
Third, people can feel incompetent when they feel unappreciated. No one is 100 percent competent. Some people struggle to complete tasks with only a small degree of success. But everyone can be appreciated for something, for things like effort, helpfulness, a positive attitude, persistence in adversity, or a willingness to try. Unappreciated people like Joanna find that even their successes are insufficient to erase the labels they have plastered on themselves, like “slug who messes things up.”
Maybe you have felt incompetent because you lacked encouragement, support, or appreciation. God doesn't see you as incompetent. He has invited you to join him in the most important task on earth: sharing the gospel with others. You can do what God calls you to do because God has made you competent by filling you with his Holy Spirit. And he is with you to encourage you, support you, and appreciate you every step of the way.
REFLECT: Have others made you feel incompetent? How? Is that the message God wants to send you?
PRAY: Ask God to fill you with confidence that he knows you are competent.
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