Scripture:Micah 6:8; James 2:14-24; Philippians 4:13
“I Got the Power”
By Julie Doane
This past fall I tutored three 4th graders at our church’s partner school, mostly in math. I don’t enjoy math but found myself practicing and teaching math each week. It required a growth mindset for all of us: embracing the challenge; keeping a positive attitude, persisting through obstacles, embracing mistakes as learning opportunities, being inspired by the success of others.
When encouraging words alone were not enough, we made it fun. I invited the students to make up short celebratory cheers to break up the monotony of multiplication facts. One girl’s cheer took me by surprise: “I got the pizza!” More predictably, the next student picked “I got the nachos!” I sensed a trend and turned to Tevy, my final student. Instead, she said, “I got the power!”
It was like God was speaking directly to me through her smile and words. “I got the power!” It gave me pause and prompted personal reflection as I drove home that day. Do I have the power? Where does it come from? Am I inviting God into tutoring or other specific tasks? Have I been asking the Holy Spirit for help?
I think Tevy’s cheer reminded her she has the power within her to conquer math problems. It also reminded me God can work through the most unlikely math tutor as long as I show up, make myself available, be consistent, listen well and share an encouraging word.
During my time as a tutor, I have learned the personal relationships we build are what matters the most to these kids. I will never be the best at explaining math. With a little divine intervention, I’m good enough to give their math skills a nudge in the right direction. What they really want is somebody to talk to. They want to share their joys and challenges. They talk about what is happening at school and home. They love it when I accept a lunch date to the school cafeteria. What gives them the power is the interest shown in their lives.
My life changed when I discovered a personal relationship with Jesus. My sense of purpose changed. At the time, I had no idea his love for me would lead to such unexpected and wonderful relationships in my life. Perhaps Tevy’s power is God’s love for us and in turn, our ability to share his love with others.
Questions to consider…
How is God’s love and power being felt by others in your life?
Is there anything holding you back from serving others?
Is there a time when you felt God’s presence or encouragement while serving others?
In what ways could you share God’s love with non-believers or those who are oppressed or marginalized in our community?
Wesley’s Challenge Questions for the Week:
- Do I grumble or complain constantly?
- Is Christ real to me?