WRITE: Devotionals, Out of the Dust, Out of the Comfort Zone
Avis Goodhart had a special reason for asking me to write her story: she’s dyslexic. What looks like a straight line of script to you moves all over the page when she sees it. Today’s devotional shares a time—one of the many times—when God took her out of her comfort zone as she taught a youth Bible study.
#8: Out of the Comfort Zone
Scripture Reading: And so it was with me, brothers and sisters. When I came to you, I did not come with eloquence or human wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power (1 Corinthians 2:1-5).
Thought: God’s not looking for ability, but availability. And sometimes availability involves revealing our weaknesses.
Excerpt from Out of the Dust: During our time in Arkansas, I began working with the teens in our church.
The more I learned, the more I taught. Probably because I had teenage children at the time, I found myself connecting with other teenagers too.
I remember picking up the football players, including my son, Mark, from school on Wednesday nights for the twelve-mile drive out to our church. Mark and I had a great relationship, and on those drives he and his friends felt free to talk. They asked me questions about almost anything: sex, drugs, schooling, and life in general. So few of them had a trusted adult to talk to, and so much learning happened on Wednesday night drives in that old Cadillac.
I wrote on a blackboard when I taught the youth Bible study, but at first, that scared me. I knew my dyslexia would show itself, and I expected no mercy from the kids. But my desire to teach them about Jesus helped me push past my concern.
Whenever I taught, I held up the Bible and said, “God wants me to teach you what’s in this book. There are some big words in it, and I can’t pronounce them. But He’s given me a good understanding of what they mean, so when I write something on the board, I want Chad [the smartest boy in the class] to make sure I spell and pronounce it correctly.”
About fifty kids attended the Bible study. Members took turns reading the Scripture passage aloud.
Some of them could read well, but some of the big football players had trouble. When their turn came, instead of their usual response, “Pass,” these big football players read. They might stumble, but they were willing to try, and no one made fun of them. After all, if anyone laughed at the football players’ reading, they’d be laughing at me too.
The teens and I had a relationship of mutual respect. We grew together as we studied the Bible. This is where I learned God’s not looking for ability, but availability. If we can risk stepping out of our comfort zone into the Spirit zone, God will provide the ability when we need it. He’ll use our weaknesses to make others strong. (Chapter 9)
Prayer: My King, you are great in power and might. Please fill me with your strength so that as I reveal myself to others, your power will shine through me. Thank you for using my weaknesses to make others strong.
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Read about Avis Goodhart and Go Ye Ministries.