In two weeks, there will be a one year candle blazing atop an imaginary cake. A celebration of sorts for when the Lord made it clear that I understand what WILLING truly looks like and how ABLE is played out. By definition, willing means ready, eager, and prepared to do something [having sort of a set mind], and able can be understood as us being fitted to do something. Sometimes we are willing and not able, and often times we are able but not willing. I am learning, in order to be an effective and efficient declarer of the Gospel, that these two must be synonymous.
In the school-home setting in which I work and live, I have seen first hand men and women, who have endured seasons of dryness, and some seasons of flooding, be willing to joy-plow their fields. And I have seen some being fitted to do so. Willing to do the work, able through abiding in Christ.
Living in such a community, I have seen my habits unclothed me, exposing unwilling areas and destroying pillars of self-sufficiency. But I have also been given new clothes to wear! And every girl loves her some new clothes… regardless if they are overalls and a crew neck tee for field work! Let’s just add a cute red bandana tied around the messy bun for posterity!
However, new clothes mean new habits. For a little example… by what you wear, sometimes your actions reflect that. I will more times than none have the notion to clean my house and attempt to play with my mean cat, Mabel, when I am in leggings and my FC Baseball sweatshirt. I will have no desire to clean my house if I was wearing that black formal dress in the back of the closet. Maybe we should say, “you are what you wear” instead of “you are what you eat!” Personally, I’d rather be a comfy pair of leggings than a Twinkie 😳 But that’s just me!
More than anything, our habits expose willingness, and they measure just how much we prefer being fitted in the able department. SO…. what does willing and able look like? Will it fit my body type? Can I wear it anywhere? Is it that perfect combination between comfy and professional?
From walking alongside joy-plowers, from caring for my mom, from being present in people’s lives, from being willing to let people in on my hurt and be a crutch when needed, from teaching and being the student, from having to sometimes change my clothes 15 times a day because I put on what I wanted instead of what I should… willing and able just looks like obedience.
…HE will put His laws into our hearts, and in our minds He will write them. Giving an outfit willing to abide and a spirit able to obey. You see, our willingness and ability to plow in any field has nothing to do how willing and able we want to be. By our own two hands, there is a complete insufficiency to making ourselves look better. We actually are more prone to put out the wrong size because we think we know best for our own bodies. When in fact, the only thing that seals that perfect fit is being willing to sacrifice ourselves unto obedience… by this we are able [being fitted] by the sanctification of His Spirit in us.
SO THAT WE MAY LOOK LIKE HIM!
We are the women who want the thing God wants more than we are afraid of it, the women who know when the love of Christ motivates, the more fearless of everything we become, the women who know real joy is not found in having the best of everything but in trusting that God’s making the best of everything.
We are the women who make our lives about the cause of Christ, not the applause of men, live to express the Gospel, not to impress the Jones’, live not to make our absence felt, but to make Christ’s presence known. -Ann Voskamp
May we be ever willing to clothe ourselves with all of Christ, giving way to the perfect outfit of truth, and recognizing that in and through Him – whatever field is in need of plowing, being clothed in Him makes us able. And in the process, He is perfecting forever those who are being sanctified.