Life At Its Best: Don't doubt ability to achieve desires
By Jim Graff
April 18, 2014 at midnight
Updated April 17, 2014 at 11:18 p.m.
Everyone has two forces competing inside of them: desire and doubt. One pushes us toward accomplishing our passions; the other causes us to retreat from them. In the end, the force we choose to let dominate will determine our destiny.
Peter proved this in John 21. He was passionate about teaching Christ's message, but the pain of Jesus' death and daily persecution started to wear him down. He doubted that he could continue pursuing what was in his heart. He soon decided to quit preaching and returned to fishing for a living.
One day, he and some disciples had been fishing for hours and had caught nothing. From the shore, Jesus (after being resurrected) called, "Friends, haven't you any fish?" They informed him that they had none. Jesus replied, "Throw your nets on the other side." When they did, they pulled in a net full of fish.
They quickly realized it was Jesus talking and rushed to meet him. While they were eating, Jesus asked Peter, "Do you love me?" He asked knowing Peter had recently abandoned his dream of spreading the Gospel. Peter devoutly responded, "Yes." So Jesus replied, "Feed my lambs and take care of my sheep."
Jesus wasn't talking about literal sheep. He was talking about wandering people oblivious to God's love. He was commanding Peter not to allow the problems he faced to overcome his passion to teach and care for God's people.
That day, Peter quit fishing and returned to preaching the Gospel. Before he died, he reached many people with the message of Christ. Because of his obedience, God used him in greater way than he ever imagined.
The same can be true for us. God has put a dream in each of our hearts. It's not one that was given by chance; it was given to drive us toward accomplishing something specific for Him. In order to see it come to pass, there are decisions we must make.
First, we must resist settling for comfort when faced with challenges. Peter almost missed God's purpose because he temporarily settled for a life that was more comfortable.
The same can happen to us. We all experience seasons when we're tempted to quit. In those times, we must choose to hold onto the desire God has given us and fight doubt with the truth of His word. Then, we must respond in obedience.
Like Peter, we must be willing to do what Jesus asks. It can be scary at times. He may ask us to do things that don't always make sense to us. However, we must remember that our responsibility is obedience, not the outcome. God knows exactly how to get us to where we need to be. We must trust and obey.
What's driving your life - desire or doubt? I encourage you to hold onto the desire God has given you. Don't settle for comfort but choose obedience. Let your passion for God's purposes cause you to persevere today.
Jim Graff is the senior pastor of Faith Family Church in Victoria. Visit faithfamilyvictoria.com.