You were created with a God-given, for-such-a-time-as-this purpose. There are people waiting on the other side of your obedience. People who need you to be brave with your life so they can be brave with theirs. Doing what He calls us to do isn’t often easy. You may feel completely underqualified, more than a little awkward, or just totally inept to do some of the things you feel stirring in your heart. But the Holy Spirit will equip and empower you to do what He has called you to do. Don’t shrink back and assume your part in God's story doesn't matter. I love what Hebrews 10:39, in the NRS translation says, "But we are not among those who shrink back and so are lost, but among those who have faith and so are saved!" We cannot afford to hold back when we sense God stirring our hearts to action. We have a responsibility to not remain silent when He calls us to speak. God gives us a voice and a measure of influence in our world. Not for our own platform, but to demonstrate and represent His heart for people. He is inviting and calling us to be part of something extraordinary, to take our place, to be the change, to be a voice, to speak a word in due season. There are certain calls to action that will require courage and obedience to step out in faith. You may feel called to do something that feels far beyond your natural ability. I have learned there are times when God will speak to you to do something, and it’s not to be put off or delayed. There are times when there is a strategic window of opportunity in which to respond. God has looked across the earth and time, and called you, counted you as qualified and able, and chosen you to be part of the story of salvation and hope and love He is writing in the Earth today, and He needs you to rise up and fulfill the purpose He has for you. Esther 4:14 (Amplified) says, “For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance shall arise for the Jews from elsewhere, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows but that you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this and for this very occasion?” If you do not respond to the call of God when He has given you clear direction to go/do/speak/write/give, if you waver and pull back, or bury your head in the sand and just hope it will all work out (or even just go away!), make no mistake: God will find someone else who will say, "Yes, Lord," and He will use them to accomplish His purpose. He loves people too much to let one person's disobedience or ongoing hesitation keep others from receiving the hope, freedom, love, and grace He has for them. I recall one experience several years ago when I sensed the Holy Spirit speaking to me to do something that felt like such a bold stretch for me to do. I had stopped by a restaurant to pick up dinner, and as I was waiting for my order, a man came in to place his order. I noticed his work attire and grease-stained hands and observed he must have just ended his work day as an auto mechanic. As we both waited in the lobby of this restaurant, I felt the Holy Spirit prompt me to tell this man, “Jesus loves you.” I froze. I heard the Holy Spirit whisper this instruction once more. I am ashamed to admit it, but I froze again, and I did not say a word. I knew the Holy Spirit was speaking to me, and even though I knew I should say something to the man, I let my own fear of what I might look like, or what he might think, keep me from doing what the Lord prompted me to do. I felt my face flush, and when my order was ready, I took it and ran. As I made my way to my car, I knew I had been disobedient, and I realized I grieved the heart of Jesus in that moment. As I drove away, He spoke words I’ll never forget, “I love that man, and I wanted you to be part of sharing that message with him. But just because you didn’t obey does not mean I won’t find someone else who will. I love him too much to let your disobedience keep him from receiving that message. If you don’t do what I’m calling you to do, I will find someone who will.” Oh, how this realization pierced my heart. I realized something so important. God wants – and needs us – to walk in obedience. There is a world out there that needs to know there is a God in Heaven Who loves them and is ready to rescue and redeem and restore. There are people who need to know that God sees them and hears the very cries of their heart. Who knows but that God has positioned YOU to be part of His extraordinary plan to accomplish His purpose in the Earth. He doesn't give you instruction or call you to do things to overwhelm or embarrass or terrify you but to give you an opportunity to be part of the epic story He is writing. You may feel as though you have made a major mistake and messed up in a big way. You may feel like I did, as though you have disappointed God and He has counted you out and moved on to the next person, disqualifying you from ever being used by Him again. But guess what? You are not disqualified from the plan God has for your life unless you just flat-out give up and throw in the towel. I have good news for you if you feel like I did that day… God is a merciful God who loves to give a second chance. And a third chance. And a fourth chance. I may have missed it the first time, but not long after that day, He gave me another opportunity to respond in obedience in a similar situation, and you cannot imagine how glad I was to understand the fullness of His love for us, that even when we mess up, He will redeem those things for our good, for the good of others, and ultimately, for His glory. So, Lovely One, don’t panic if you realize you have missed His voice or did not respond when He prompted you to action. Jesus loves YOU too much to allow you to stay in a place of defeat. God will help you rise up and walk in victory and enable you to do what He has called you to do. His thoughts toward you are good not evil. He is cheering you on, and He will fulfill the great plans and purpose He has for your life. He will equip you to do every good work. Open your heart to receive His grace, mercy, strength, courage, and unfailing love for you. And, by His grace, press on. You have what it takes, for such a time as this.