Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Here Am I, Send Me!

Carter never hesitates when asked to do something in front of a crowd.
It's in his blood.
He has enough of his Great Papa Whittle and others in him.
This year for L2L was a first for him.  He wrote his speech completely by himself.
He has always helped with the majority of the planning but this year he did it all himself.
I am so glad he is fearless when it comes to speaking in front of others!

“Here am I, send me.” This verse taken from Isaiah 6:8 is one we hear quite a bit.  We all know people who have said this or lived by these words.   However, what does it mean to me?  I think of someone asking a group of people to do a job.  From that group of people, one person stands up and says he will do whatever the job is.   We see many examples of people in the Bible who were asked to do special assignments.  Sometimes, people responded and took the job.  Most of us would like to think we would be the one to stand up and say yes.  But when the time came, some of us might be like others, who didn’t want to take the job.  John Gordon once said, “God does not call the best.  He calls the most willing. You don’t have to be the best to do great things.  Just be willing.”  These people that say, “Here am I, send me!”  have that willing spirit in them.  I want to look at two examples from the Bible that show us what we can do when the time comes for us to say, “Here am I, send me!”
1    The first example I want to look at is David and Goliath from 1 Samuel 17.  The Philistine army was preparing for a battle against Israel.  Each army was on a separate mountain with a valley between them.  The Philistines sent their giant, Goliath, to ask one Israelite to fight.  Nobody wanted to fight Goliath.  Goliath was “defying the armies of the living God.” (v. 27) David’s God.  Israel’s God.  However, in verses 10-11 it says the Israelite soldiers were afraid. They had lost faith in God even though God had saved them other times before.  David was not afraid because he remembered God’s faithfulness.  “Moreover . . . The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion, ... the paw of the bear … He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” (17:37) Even though he was the smallest one, he was going to fight the nine-foot monster Goliath.  People tried to tell him not do to it but David didn’t listen to them.  Goliath thought it was going to be easy to defeat David, but he was wrong.   David came to fight not “with a sword, a spear and a javelin” as Goliath did in verse 45.  He came “in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel.”  The result, David took Goliath down with a slingshot and stones, but most of all faith in God.  What can we learn from this?  Nobody was willing to fight.  Was it scary? Probably.  Yet, David put his fears behind him and stepped up when no one else would.  To a 10 year old, I can volunteer to step out of my comfort zone and answer God’s call by saying “Hear am I, send me!”
2    My second example starts off with the complete opposite attitude.  This is the story of Jonah found in the book of the Bible that is named after him.  God is asking Jonah to go to the city of Nineveh to tell them their wickedness had come up before God (1:2).  Jonah did not want to go there, so he ran away from God by getting on a boat that was going in the opposite direction.  Since Jonah didn’t do what God said, God sent a big storm.  Jonah was on the decks below trying to hide.  After casting lots, the crew on the boat asked Jonah what he had done to make his God so angry.  Jonah told them he had run away from God, so they threw him out of the boat into the sea.  A giant fish, made by God Himself, swallowed Jonah and Jonah prayed to God because he had sinned.  After three days, the giant fish spit him out on land.  When God asked him a second time, Jonah went to Nineveh, preached, and Nineveh was a changed city.  Our lesson from Jonah is to go willingly the first time.  Sometimes, like Jonah, we will not want to do God’s will.  We might think our way is better and do what we want to do.  Only to find out in the end, God directs us back to where we really need to be.  And it is then that we step and say, “Here am I, send me!”
From these examples, we learn we don’t have to be the biggest and best to answer God’s call.  We also see that sometimes, we do mess up, but we can make it right by turning back to answer God’s call. Therefore whether I am the smallest, least talented or even the one doing wrong at one time, I can always look to God when He calls and say, “Here am I, send me!”

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