Recently while cleaning my book case I happened across one of my first bibles. I was around 12-14 when I had this bible and some things I had written would testify of my maturity level. I can remember using this bible, where at, when, who my friends were and what I was like back then. Nearly 10 years have passed since I used that little blue New American Standard Bible. It was the first bible that I underlined, highlighted, and felt comfortable writing my favorite scriptures down in. As I flipped through the pages I found the back cover filled with verses from that year at Falls Creek that God used to speak to me. One in particular caught my attention more than most, It was one that as the years have passed its influence has stayed the same. But one thing was different, in this bible I had edited the text just a bit. The verse comes out of Matthew 28 verses 18-20. It’s one you are probably familiar with, but my version was extremely personal.
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20 NASB)
is what it says, but mine read like this:
And Jesus came up and spoke to Sean, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Sean, go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:18-20 NASB)
As a young boy I finally grasped how personal our God is. Yes He speaks to all through His word and it was intended for all people to enjoy it, but this verse was affirmed to me through the Holy Spirit.
Growing up I always struggled with confidence and self worth, and though God has given me confidence in who He is, I still sometimes struggle with the feelings of being unwanted, unconfident, shy, and looked down upon. But here in this moment, down at Falls Creek, God spoke to me saying directly to ME, “I have all the power, now just go out and do what I tell you to do”.
That passage was something I needed as a young boy, but I also need it today. Remembering that God has a purpose for every word I speak, every action I have, and even every time I preach and that trusting in He that has been given all the power will take care of me, clothe me with confidence, cover me with His protection. I just need to trust in Him and continue to place my faith in Him daily.