So many of us struggle with feelings of incompetence. We wonder if we're good enough. We feel the immense weight of our calling and feel incompetent. In my last post I wrote that we are letters from God and that we ought to live like letters from God. I don't know about you, but often I feel unable to do that.
The Apostle Paul, however, was very confident in the Corinthians ability to be letters from God. He knew that He preached the truth and that the Gospel would change them so that they would be beautiful letters from God. Look at what he writes in verses 4-6.
"Such confidence as this is ours through Christ before God. Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of the new covenant... not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life." 2 Corinthians 3:4-6
Paul was confident in sharing the Gospel because of two reasons.
1) God is the giver of competence.
Paul, though incredibly driven and intelligent, said that he was competent to be a minister of the Gospel because of God, not because of himself. We are in the same boat. We have no right to feel incompetent to the point of paralyzation, because it isn't you and I that needs to be good enough, it's God. I don't have to be self-competent to be a minister of the Gospel (and we are all ministers, see the Great Commission). If you believe that God is able, then you are able when you lean fully on Him. This is the beauty of being temples of the Holy Spirit... we have the living God in us to work through us to succeed in His mission.
2) The Gospel has great power.
Paul was confident to share the Gospel because the Gospel was and is powerful. The Gospel in the passage above is called the new covenant. As I wrote in my previous post, the new covenant is one written on our hearts, not on stone tablets. The old covenant killed. No one, except for Jesus, could keep the old covenant. The old covenant said, "If you obey, then I will bless". The law made us keenly aware of our sin, our inevitable failure and our need for saving. The new covenant says, "I will love you and forgive you and I will cause you to obey me". In the new covenant God is the acting agent. All who enter into the new covenant will have eternal life with Jesus... ALL! All who enter into the new covenant will be changed by Almighty God... ALL!
This is confidence. We don't have to be special and self-competent to have success sharing the Gospel because the Gospel is powerful enough on it's own. All we have to do is take hold of the confidence we've been given and be bold in sharing and living the Gospel.
If you feel incompetent at times as a minister of the Gospel I want you to know you're normal. We all feel this way at times. But I want you to know that there is no reason to feel this way. God is the giver of competence and the Gospel is powerful. Therefore be bold.
And the next time you feel incompetent here's what I want you to do. I want to you say, "Shut up, Satan!" The Devil is the father of lies and he wants us Christians to believe we're not good enough to be a part of our Father's mission. Don't believe the lies. Know that you have been given more than enough to do your job. If God is for us, who can be against us? Be a beautiful letter from God today.