Question: “I’ve been a Christian for three years, and I sometimes feel I can’t do anything for God. I feel like I’m immature and a young Christian. And it feels like it will take years before I mature into the standard man of God. How can I testify to my friends and those around me when I am still weak and in need of growing? Sometimes I feel like I’m not mature enough to do something for Christ. Sometimes when I fall into sin I feel like I’m not ready to go to school or to speak to people. I only feel ready when my mind is focused on Christ and when I lead a more mature walk. I don’t think this is the biblical mindset, but I’m not sure.”
Tim: I’m just going to end by saying one thing to Ken. There are a number of things that could be said, but Ken, I would have you go to Scripture, and very specifically to Mark 5:15, maybe even start a little earlier there, because it’s the account of the demoniac, the man that was full of the legion of demons. Once that man was delivered and he was set in his right mind, you remember he was at times chained and he would break the chains. He ran around in the tombs. He would slash himself. He would cry out. People couldn’t even go that way. I mean, he was just fierce, and we actually understand from Matthew’s Gospel that there were two men. But, what happened after this man was set in his right mind, delivered of all these legion of demons, the people from that area came to Jesus. They saw the demon possessed man, the one who had had the legion sitting there clothed and in his right mind. They were afraid. Those that had seen it described to them what had happened to the demon possessed man and to the pigs. You remember, the legion of demons went out into the pigs, and the pigs all ran down into the ocean over the cliff into the ocean. They died. They began to beg Jesus to depart from their region. And as He was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed with the demons begged Him that he might be with Him. And He did not permit him, but said to him, “Go home to your friends, and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how He has had mercy on you.”
And, Ken, no matter how immature you are, no matter how recently saved you are, let that man be an example for us. Christ did not think he was too immature to go speak to his family and his friends and his kinsmen and his city. We have to be careful about that whole attitude. We don’t feel like we can do anything for God. It’s not really as though God needs us to do anything. In fact, what Scripture makes very clear is without Christ we can do nothing, and if we’re not abiding in Him, we can do nothing. And when we talk that talk, I just don’t feel like I can do anything for God, the fact is the best thing, the smallest thing, the most trifling thing that we can ever do that’s worth anything, He has done through us. We are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works. And if we’re not abiding in Him, and He’s not supporting it and strengthening it, and giving us the grace to carry it out, we simply can’t go there. God is not waiting around for us. Didn’t God say in the Psalms, “Look, if I were hungry I would not come to you.” Why? Because all the food is His. He doesn’t need us in that fashion. And if there’s uncleanness in the life, then it’s true, and we hear it on Sunday afternoon. You’re a fit vessel when you’re a clean vessel. And if there’s sin in the life, we need to repent of the sin. Clean vessels will get used. They’ll be profitable for the Master’s use. That’s what Paul taught Timothy.