Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.
No one has everything, but everybody has something. Even when people think they don't have anything of value, they really do. It is unfortunate that some people speak lack over their lives instead of what they have.
It is not uncommon to hear people say, "I don't have anything to wear." That's not true because they have a whole closet full of clothes to wear. Instead, they should say, "I don't have anything I would like to wear to the party tonight." That is more like the truth. Whenever we speak lack, we will continue to be in lack.
When we begin to speak sufficiency over our lives, we will have enough to supply our every need.
There are many examples in the Bible about people who thought they had nothing that God could use. The truth is that everyone has something that God can use. It is interesting because God gave everyone a gift. The gift is not just for the recipient. Instead, the gift God gives is to be used to help His people, according to 1 Peter 4:10. So, what do you have? Whatever it is, use if for the glory of God.
Use the Stick That You Have
God called Moses from the burning bush and instructed him to go down to Egypt to free the Hebrews who were in slavery. Moses gave excuses and tried to talk his way out of going. When Moses asked God why would the people believe him, God asked Moses, “What is that in your hand?” (Exodus 4:1-9)
It was just a stick Moses had been using to tending father-in-law's sheep on the backside of the mountain. God instructed Moses to throw it on the ground and it turned into a snake. When Moses picked the snake up by its tail, it turned back into his stick. God used the stick to show Moses the miracles that could be done with it.
When Moses was leading the Hebrews out of Egypt, they came to the Red Sea with Pharaoh's army behind them. Moses began crying out to God. God asked Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground"(Exodus 14:15-16).
Moses used that same stick to strike the rock to get water for the thirsty people in the wilderness. Indeed, the stick was what Moses had in his hand, and he used it to accomplish many things.
Sell Your Olive Oil
In Second Kings 4:1-7, a widow thought she had nothing of value. After her husband died, creditors threatened to take her two sons as slaves to pay off the family's debt. She went to the prophet Elisha for help because she didn't know what to do.
The first thing the prophet asked was, "What do you have?" She thought that was a strange question because she was in so much debt. What Elisha wanted her to acknowledge was that she did have something.
The widow told Elisha, "Your servant has nothing at all except a small jar of olive oil." That was all Elisha needed to hear. The word except let the prophet know that the woman did have something after all.
She obeyed the prophet and filled all the jars she had and asked neighbors for their jars. She kept pouring until she had no more jars to fill. She sold the oil and paid off her debts, and the creditors left her alone.
Give Your Lunch To Jesus
John 6:5-13 records a story about Jesus feeding the five thousand men plus women and children with a little boy's lunch consisting of only five small barley loaves and two small fish. The feeding of the five thousand is in all four gospels, but the recording of the little boy's lunch is found only in the Gospel of John.
John wanted his audience to know that the little boy's meager lunch in the hands of Jesus was multiplied and fed thousands of people. After everyone was fed, there were twelve baskets of fragments from the fish left over.
The little boy had something that could be used. He might have been surprised that his lunch was needed for one of the greatest miracles in the Bible. You, too, have something that can be used by God.
Cast Your Net on the Other Side
Peter and some other fishermen had gone back to their jobs as fishermen after Jesus' death, burial and resurrection. According to John 21:1-14, the men had fished all night by the sea of Galilee and had caught nothing. After they had cleaned their net, Jesus appeared on the shore and told them to cast their net on the right side of the boat. Here was a carpenter telling experienced fishers how to catch fish in the daytime when fish usually bite at night.
As strange as the instruction was, the fishermen did as they were told. They caught 153 fish. When the fishermen thought they had nothing to take home to their families, they had more fish than they had ever caught before.
Offer the Name of Jesus
In Acts 3:1-10, Peter and John were on their way to the temple to pray when they saw a man who had been lame all his life sitting by the gate begging for money. Others had passed the man day after day and saw him lying there. Some dropped coins in his cup without making eye contact with him as they rushed by. Others ignored the man and went about their day.
Peter told the man, "Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk." Then the apostle took the man by his right hand and lifted him up. Immediately, the strength came in the man's feet and ankle bones. He began leaping and walking and praising God.
Peter and John used what they had, and they offered it to the man who was lame at the time. They gave him the name of Jesus that changed the man's life forever.
Everybody Has Something God Can Use
Everyone has something that can be used to solve a problem. Just as God asked Moses, "What's in your hand?" He is asking you the same question. It might not be an old battered stick, but it is something.
You might not have olive oil to sell, but you have something that will help you out in a desperate situation. You might not need to give Jesus your lunch to feed a multitude, but there is something you can offer Him.
If Jesus tells you to cast your net on the other side of the boat, do it even though you don't think it will work. You just might end up with an unbelievable catch.
Be like Peter and John and offer the best thing there is to offer. You might not have silver and gold, but you can offer someone the name of Jesus.