Mike Henderson
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Are You Selling Yourself Short?

dunking a basketball

Anyone who has ever played basketball has dreamed of dunking the ball.

But for people like me, who tend to suffer from height challenges along with reduced jumping abilities, it’s out of reach. The basket, that is. But I can jump high enough to touch the bottom of the net. Granted, that’s over a foot away from the rim. And you can’t just touch the rim, you must be able to elevate above the rim.  That’s beyond me.

So I was pretty impressed when I ran across a video of a guy who is only 5’2” dunking the basketball. That is unheard of. It’s rather incredible, really. Most people at that height would assume it was impossible.  Maybe not even try.  Obviously this guy went above and beyond expectations.  It would be so easy to be like everyone else.  To assume it couldn’t be done.  But he didn’t sell himself short, and now he amazes everyone who sees him at his game.

Let’s move outside the arena of basketball. In fact, let’s go back to a guy named Moses.

I bet you have heard of him. Did you know that he almost sold himself short? Thankfully God stepped in and made him go for it.

It all started when God showed up one day and asked Moses to lead Israel out of Egypt. Most would have jumped at the opportunity. Not Moses.

He balked. Big time!

Moses’ first response was to fall back on what others thought about him.  At least his perception of it.

First, he was a “nobody.” Because of that he didn’t think anyone would listen to him or follow his leadership. He had no credentials.

Then Moses answered, “But behold, they will not believe me or listen to my voice, for they will say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’” Exodus 4:1 (ESV)

And there was more to his insecurity issues.  Apparently he didn’t have the gift of public speaking. And since leaders have to speak on occasion, he was convinced he was the wrong guy. So he “said to the Lord, “Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.” Exodus 4:10 (ESV) 

And then he said, “Oh, my Lord, please send someone else.” Exodus 4:13 (ESV)

Now stop and think about it for a moment. You have heard of Moses because he eventually relented and did what he thought he could not do.

He did what he was not qualified to do.

He did what he thought someone else could have done better.

Thankfully Moses trusted God to use him. But what if God had allowed Moses to sell himself short? Many today consider Moses to be the greatest leader in the Old Testament.

I often wonder what Moses thought about when he went to bed at night.

Did he ever think, “I almost sold myself short.”

Perhaps a good question to ask is “Where am I selling myself short.” Maybe it’s time to go out and try to dunk that basketball.

What are You Stirring Up

Error iconIn 2 Timothy Paul tells Timothy to fan into flame the gift within him.  Have you ever tried to fan into flame a fire that did not exist?  That’s like trying to stir  up a gift that is not in you.

A few years ago I went to downtown Charlottesville and bought a guitar.  I am not even close to a musician.  So why did I do that?  Because I thought I should work on a weakness.  Who knows, perhaps if I could spend hours upon hours and learn how to play a few chords I could make a difference.  Fat chance!

When I was in college I was not a fan of literature.  As a result, my lack of interest led to me getting a ‘D’ in the class.  My professor called me in to see if she could uncover the problem in my life.  I was straight up with her.  I told her I did not like literature.  Not trying to hurt her feelings, but I was being honest.

So she proceeds to ask how I was doing in my other classes.  Hated to break the news, but I had ‘A’s in all my other classes.  Why?  Because I loved those classes.  They all centered around my major, my main interest, my strength if you will.

In the end I got rid of the guitar.  Buying it was a huge error on my part. I have since given up trying to work on my weaknesses.  Forget about those areas you get a ‘D’ in.  Focus your attention in the area(s) where you get an ‘A.’  That’s where you are truly gifted.  Stir it up as Paul says.

Have you identified what gift or strength you need to stir up or improve upon?