In my more honest moments, I realize that I have a great job and an awesome wife and family, and I really have no idea how I ever hooked that up.
But most of the time, when I’m not being that self-aware, I make it through the day/week/month feeling like I’ve got it pretty well figured out and I can navigate my tasks (including the ones that involve ministry) with nothing by my intuition, experience, and considerable wits.
In short, I have delusions of adequacy.
Well. Midway through the blue sky nine Asian tour, I got really sick. Not H1N1 sick; but it was the mother of all head-colds. Right in the thick of this particluar misery is when we had to play our first gig in Seoul. And I’m praying that my nose wouldn’t drip DURING the point in the concert where I share about how people can begin a relationship with God. (It’s a serious moment and I didn’t want to punctuate it by blowing my nose.)
Before we went on, I felt awful and wasn’t thinking clearly – and truthfully, just wanted to lay down and pray for the relief that only death could bring. (I said I wasn’t thinking clearly…) But instead, I prayed that God would give me strength and clarity enough to get through the music and message. I knew in that moment that I was not (and never could be) equal to the task I had before me.
So, I prayed for clarity and relief. And not really believing any of that would actually happen, I loaded up my pockets with tissues and walked onstage.
Because that’s the kind of giant of the faith that I am sometimes.
So I grabbed my guitar and walked out to an energetic crowd of 400 or so, and began to play the set. And something cool happened. The sinus pain subsided and my thoughts actually congealed in a meaningful way. I felt better – a lot better. Between the translator and I, I think a coherent message actually got communicated. And I might have played guitar pretty well – as far as you know, anyway.
If I’m really honest, that happens to me more than I’d like. The delusions of adequacy part, not the debilitating headcold part. I’m always sort of glad when those moments happen that kneecap me and remind me who’s really doing the heavy lifting.
Hopefully next time I won’t have to get the Asian sinus ick to remember that.