I recently received my driving permit, which was completely and totally by the grace of God.  My father was with me when I took the test and was the first person I told of my success after exiting the doors of the testing room.  I was happy and I could tell that he was happy for me.  It may have just been my imagination, but I think I could feel pride radiating from his smile.  And for that, I loved my father eternally.

It wasn't until we were driving home that I questioned his sanity.  God bless his heart.

As we were halfway up our holler (if y'all are city folk, that's a country term for a neighborhood in the hills), my dad pulled over and told me I was driving the rest of the way home.  Within an hour of being permitted to drive, my dad was asking me to drive up Rockhouse.

If you've never been up Rockhouse, you wouldn't understand the daunting task that my father had set before me.  You see, Rockhouse isn't a parking lot or a straight stretch of road.  It is a set of curves that continuously weave in and out.  The road is wide enough for a car and a bicycle to pass side by side and that is about it.  You must continuously watch for black labs or German shepherds as you maneuver the curves and stay away from the deep ditches.  And that's just on the blacktop.  Once the blacktop ends, you approach the gravel road that climbs into the hills.  We're not talking massive heights here, but if you were unfortunate enough to misjudge the distance between your vehicle and the edge, plummeting to certain death would be a possibility.  At least, that's how it seemed to me as I nervously sat in the driver's seat, adjusted all that needed to be adjusted, and wondered why my father had a death wish not only for himself, but for me and for anyone who would have the misfortune of meeting us on the road.

As you can tell by the fact that I'm alive to write this blog, we survived.  We even came across a UPS delivery truck and I managed not to harm anyone or create any property damage!  I clearly have a lot of work to do, as anyone at this stage of driving would, but I have more confidence now than I did before I drove that stretch of road.  Why?  Because my father had confidence in me, even when I didn't.  He knew that I could do it.  And although I was scared out of my mind and the process wasn't perfect, I ended up proving him right. 

That's such a beautiful reflection of God's confidence in us.  So often, He asks us to do something that we don't feel we're capable of doing.  We come up with a million excuses or hide behind our insecurities and end up robbing ourselves, and others, of blessings because we didn't have confidence.  But God always has confidence in us.  He knows us better than we know ourselves and He knows what He has made us capable of doing.

Confidence is something I personally struggle with.  I have dignity and self-respect, but insecurities eat away at my heart too often for comfort.  I know my Father is capable of doing wonderful, awe-inspiring things.  I even know that He can do them in my life.  But once I'm included in those things, once something is required of me, I begin to freak out.  What if I do this wrong?  I'm not right for this.  Someone can totally do this better than me.  What is He thinking?  I'm just a kid.  I don't have anything important to say.  I don't have some awesome voice.  I'm just mediocre at best.  There's no way He could use me like He did Jeremiah or David.  I'm not made from the same material those guys were.  I'm just me.

If you have a similar thinking process, let me share something with you: there is such beauty in just being you.  Because that is exactly who God created you to be.  Before you were born, He already knew your strengths and weaknesses.  He already had a plan of how to use both to glorify His kingdom and draw you into a closer relationship with Him.  And because He knows you best, He knows how He can and will use you.  God has confidence in your abilities.  God has confidence in what you can do.  But most importantly, God has confidence in you.   

My daddy is a good, albeit insane, daddy.  Our Heavenly Father is a good Daddy, too.  And although at times His requests seem totally bizarre, He is aware of what He is asking.  His strength is made perfect in our weakness.  So I pray that you allow your weaknesses to glorify Christ and that you gain confidence in who you are and what He has made you capable of.  God bless.

1 comment: