Taking the Limits Off
We can find ourselves limited by many things: the hurts from our past, the way others see us, the way we see ourselves; we can have financial limitations; or we can be limited because of our responsibilities. Many things can try to limit us and keep us from accomplishing what God wants us to do.
We need to see that God has a plan for our lives and He is not limited. He has a good plan for us. He has not planned defeat for us. He has planned victory. His desire for us is to be happy, confident, people with a purpose.
The devil, on the other hand, wants us to be fearful, defeated, barely making it through life.
Once a man owned a donkey. He wanted to get rid of the donkey. He couldn’t sell it. It wasn’t worth anything. So he decided to kill the donkey by burying it alive. He dug a hole and put the donkey in the hole and then he told his men to start filling in the hole. They started throwing shovelfuls of dirt into the hole and the dirt landed on the donkey’s back. When the donkey felt the dirt on his back, he thought, “Hey, what’s that?” And he shook the dirt off. The dirt fell on the ground and the donkey stepped on it. Every shovelful of dirt that landed on the donkey ended up under the donkey’s feet and instead of being buried alive the donkey kept getting higher and higher until there was no hole and the donkey was free.
That is what we can do when we have problems. What the devil means for evil we can put under our feet. Every difficulty that the devil throws on our backs we can shake off, step on it and rise to a new level.
Our responsibilities can look like limitations to us. Sometimes there is so much to do and there seems to be no end and we are tired. We have children, jobs, cooking, cleaning, a long list of responsibilities.
I have 5 children. When they were little I sometimes hid in the bathroom just to be alone for a while. (One of them was usually on the outside trying to kick down the door though!)
The weight of our responsibilities can sometimes seem too much. But Heb. 12:1 says “Lay aside every weight, run the race, look to Jesus.”
Phil. 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Changing our perspective will change things. Looking to Jesus for help and knowing he will help us will give us the strength we need.
Susannah Wesley was the mother of John and Charles Wesley, the founders of the Methodist church. She lived in the 1700’s. She had 13 children! In that time women wore long dresses and long aprons. She taught her children that if she put her apron over her head they were not to speak to her. She put her apron over her head and prayed. She spent time teaching her children about God and how to love and serve him. All of her children grew up to do great things for God.
Your responsibilities do not need to overwhelm you. God gives grace to meet every challenge. You can do great things for a God.
What does the Bible say about women?
Prov 31:10 says that a woman is more valuable than rubies. During Solomon’s time when Proverbs was written rubies were the most expensive jewel. You cost more than the most expensive jewel!
In another place in Proverbs Solomon calls wisdom a woman.
In the Bible some women who were born into poor situations were came to be called blessed because of their reactions to the so-called limitations in their lives. For example, Rahab. Rahab was a prostitute. But when she believed in God, God put her name in the Bible and she is called blessed.
But the woman who tempted Joseph in the Old Testament, even though she was rich and powerful in life, her name is not even mentioned.
In the New Testament, Dorcas was so important that when she died the believers sent Word to Peter to come and raise her from the dead. They couldn’t do without her. Because she was kind and served the church.
Study the women of the Bible - study Deborah, a ruler over the nation of Israel, Anna, a priestess in the temple, Hannah, whose son became a prophet of God.
These were not weak women. These were women of influence! Strong women! Women of importance! Women like you and me! See yourself like that. That is who God made you to be.
The Bible says that God is no respecter of persons. That means that man or woman or child, no matter the color of our skin and no matter our age, it makes no difference to God.
Others in the Bible, rose above what could have been limitations and are listed as mighty in God’s kingdom.
Samuel was about only 5 years old when he heard God speak. And he listened and was obedient. Age was not important.
David was a teenager when he learned to hear and obey the voice of God. His brothers thought he was insignificant, but God saw him as a man after His own heart.
Jesus cast demons out of a man who lived in a cemetery and was naked and violent. That man became a Jesus follower and nothing in his life was ever the same again. His heart responded to God and God raised him up.
George Mueller had a heart for orphans. He believed that God could supply every need. He took in hundreds of orphans. He never asked anyone for any money for their support and God fed them every day in miraculous ways. In fact, one day there was no food and no money. He told the children to set the table with plates and utensils to eat. They sat down and began to thank God for the food. There was a knock at the door. The grocery truck had broken down in front of the house and they gave all the food on the truck to the children.
All of these people did important things for God because they said yes to God’s will for their lives.
What important thing can you do with your life? How can you influence the world?
Catherine Booth was the wife of the man who started the Salvation Army. Together they reached out to the poor and needy, to alcoholics and prostitutes. They would go into bars and brothels and get people saved.
Catherine’s prayer was “Lord, make me a blessing in the world today.”
What would happen if we prayed that prayer every day? You are the only one who can reach the people in your world. How would your world be different if you asked God to make you a blessing to those around you?
In the Old Testament there is a story about a woman who saw the prophet Elisha walking past her home. She knew he was a man of a God and she wanted to do something for him. She saw that she could help him by building a room where he could rest. It was a simple thing. She offered him a room to stay in. Could you do something simple? Something you already know how to do? Yes! How can you be a blessing today?
None of the people we have talked about were limited by anything. They took the limitations off. They could have felt sorry for themselves. They could have cried. They could have done nothing. But they didn’t.
And you won’t either. You and I will be the people God wants us to be.
Let’s believe God’s Word is true - because it is! Let’s be people of influence. Let’s raise children who will change the world. Let’s be Proverbs 31 women with businesses and properties. Let’s be men of love and compassion, caring for our families and serving the church. Together let’s change the world!
My encouragement to you is that you determine to know God’s Word. Let’s be committed to know His Will for our lives. Let’s see ourselves as necessary parts of God’s plan for the world. Let’s be people of purpose.