On the missions trip, I really struggled to grasp his teaching on God's posture toward the poor. He seemed so naive. "Blessed are the poor...blessed are the hungry." Have you met the poor? the hungry? Confusion.
Sometimes, I understand things, but can't explain them. They're too deep. The person isn't ready to hear it. I get shy.
But I feel this enormous pressure to project confidence, to have answers, to be convincing, powerful.
I want to come in confidence and power, with smooth presentation. I want my message and my preaching to be with memorable and applicable words...
Contrast me and Paul:
I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power. - 1 Cor. 2:3-5
Paul is able to be vulnerable. Why?
I think Paul's vulnerability flows deeply from his conviction that his mission depends on God's activity. Whenever vulnerability thrives in my ministry, an awareness of God's activity will already be there.
If this depends on me, I've got to be on.
If this depends on God, I can be my limited self: confused, temporarily rebellious, unfinished, insufficient, vulnerable.
And the irony is that, to do what God's called me to do, I must be becoming the person God wants me to become. And I can't be becoming if I'm constantly pretending to have already arrived.
We must pursue vulnerability.