Several years ago I worked in early childhood education. One of the first things I learned (and had to keep learning) was to never do for a child what a child can do for themselves. I like things to move along quickly. Watching a child do a task they were new at was painstakingly slow. It was a lot quicker for me to step in and do it for them, but in doing so, I was robbing them of increasing their ability to do the task. I had to learn to coach them through the process rather than to just sit back and watch them struggle. Some kids wanted me to do everything, liked the help, some ignored me and others insisted they didn’t want my input. Ultimately i embraced my role to empower them.
As Christians we’re not much different than the kids I used to work with. We’re slow moving on the tasks God asks us to do. When He sends help, we may push back because of our pride. Many times we just want God to do all the hard work while we sit back and enjoy the fruits of His labor. There are also times where we simply ignore what He’s asking us to do. He write it off telling ourselves that the voice isn’t God. Ultimately we need God’s help in completing and fulfilling our purpose. He gave us the Holy Spirit to guide us and to help us as we accomplish His will.
Philippians 2:13 says, “For it is [not your strength, but it is] God who is effectively at work in you, both to will and to work [that is, strengthening, energizing, and creating in you the longing and the ability to fulfill your purpose] for His good pleasure” (AMP). One of the notes in my Bible for this verse says that while God supports us, it is our responsibility to do the work He called us to. No one else is going to do what you’re called to do. It is your part to play in the story God is writing. He’s there to guide, help and support you through it, but He’s not going to do for you what you can do and are called to do. Listen for His voice as He guides you, strengthens and energized you to fulfill His purposes for your life.
Photo by Giulio Del Prete on Unsplash
2 responses to “Doing Your Work”
I know just what you’re talking about, Chris—in both examples. I’ve been in cafeterias with 175 little people; it’s impossible to help every kid open their milk. The more they do for themselves the better. It’s the same with shoe tying. I try to find an expert in every class—someone who already knows how to tie—and then let them help others. This way I can keep teaching.
How we must be like little children to God! Sometimes we want Him to do everything for us, but that’s just not the plan. However, He does say that having the faith of a child is a good thing.
I hope you have a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year. Thank you for your blog ministry, brother.
Great examples! Thanks for bringing more clarity to what I was trying to say.
Merry Christmas to you and may God bless your blog ministry next year as well.