Have you ever looked at the Bible, the endless shelves of theological books at the bookstore, listened to your pastor cite a slew of verses you didn’t even know existed and thought, “I’m missing something.”?
How can I ever be a woman who changes the world for Jesus if I don’t have a plethora of knowledge about His Word and all of the “isms” that people of faith seem to debate all of the time. I’m just too simple.
I’d say you’re in the perfect position to be used of God in an incredible way. But don’t take (or leave) my opinion and exit out of this post quite yet. See, I’m not one of those theologians either. I’m a simple girl myself who has all kinds of confusing thoughts and self-doubt bouncing around in this head of mine on a daily basis.
That’s why I’m thankful to my dad for his simple, compelling way of helping me see the truth about life, its purpose, and God’s Word when I start down the path of complication or self-doubt. Inevitably, I’ll hear his gentle, authoritative voice quote a scripture that seems to be overlooked far too often. When I’m sure life’s just too complex for me to handle, I’ll hear him say, “Kelly, what’s the whole duty of man?”
I answer in a quiet voice, “Fear God and keep His commandments.”
Remember. Those words came from the wisest man who ever lived. After he wrestled with life’s purpose for an entire book of the Bible, Solomon finally stopped fretting and listened to God’s expectations.
“The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” Ecclesiastes 12:13
It doesn’t say, “Successfully attain a degree in theology.” or “Become a missionary to the North Pole.” or “Teach a Sunday school class.” or even “Homeschool your children.”
Please don’t misunderstand me here. I’m not downplaying the importance of any of these callings. In fact, in your quest to truly comprehend what it means for you to fear God and keep His commandments, you may very well come to the realization that He wants you to do one or all of those things.
But if God hasn’t called you to any of them, stop wasting your energy feeling like you’re missing your purpose. Your purpose is to fear God in everything you do each day. It is to live by His commands. Quite frankly, it’s a tall order, but that’s kind of the point.
You can’t do it without God, for you’ll need to have His strength to accomplish His purpose for you. Also, you must accept that your purpose will look different in various seasons of your life. As long as you’re focused on your two duties, it shouldn’t matter if your full-time ministry is to teach troubled teens, counsel alcoholics or inmates, or instill the truths of God’s Word in the lives of your own precious children.
The Bible isn’t full of superheros who did amazing things none of us could do. It’s full of scared, insecure, arrogant, or rebellious men and women whom God empowered to accomplish unexplainable things to bring glory to His name.
So stop the excuses. Don’t exhaust yourself with piles of books that do nothing more than confuse you and make you feel inadequate. Check out the ultimate authority of all literature – the Bible. Your calling is really not complicated no matter how hard you’re trying to convince yourself it is.
Keep His commandments.
It’s the whole duty of man.