Dilemma

It’s been a bit busy this week.  There have been unusual demands on my time, many of which I have been happy to fulfill.  But other things have crept in too and I reach the end of my week feeling weary.

I have begun to recognize the signs.  When I am writing, I am content.  I know, in my mind and my spirit, I am responding to God’s call on my life.  I have deadlines (yes, self-imposed, but deadlines none the less) and they are drawing closer.  As I let each day slip past, so I realise those who are ready to help me with tasks I am unable to do myself will be put under greater pressure themselves if we are to reach completion on time.

So must I begin to say no to people who ask me to do extra tasks?  How do I define those things that I am asked to do, (because other people’s priorities are different to my own) from those I am asked to do because they are part of God’s calling on my life.

Many of these extras revolve around talking, writing, editing, but are not the main focus of my writing, which is the completion of my series of novels, God’s People.  Many of them involve talking to congregations, editing Christian books or articles for others with similar callings to my own.  Is this God enlarging my territory in response to my prayer to do just that?  ‘Oh, God, that you would bless me indeed, enlarge my territory … (1 Chronicles 4:9-10).  Or am I someone who can’t say no?

It’s a dilemma for which I have yet to find the answer.  Yet God, just this morning in my devotional reading, assured me I could trust Him, for He is moulding me into the shape I need to fulfill His plans for me.  And sometimes that’s tough – like a pebble on the beach is smoothed into a beautiful thing by the rough action of the waves so we can be challenged in difficult ways.

Then, in Scripture, He said to me: “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.” (Psalm 32:8)

I know the book will be written.  Maybe my self-imposed deadline is not God’s.  And I know, whatever I do for Him will bear fruit – not because of any effort of my own, but because He is working with me.

So perhaps I will continue to say yes.  After all, He is the one who directs my path and He can accomplish His plans, however weak and feeble my efforts.  It is His power, not mine that enables the harvest to be gathered and the work to be done.

About Mandy Hackland

My love in life is to encourage others to deepen their relationship with God. I write devotional material, stories and small group studies with that in mind. I live in South Africa and also love spending time in the bush, bird watching and walking. I do live in the city but make the most of the green spaces that surround me.
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