I mull over this phrase from time to time as I consider the many opportunities I’ve had, the many opportunities I’ve botched and the many opportunities I’ve either missed or passed up through the years. The missed and passed up opportunities have probably hounded me as much or more than the opportunities I’ve botched. Usually, but not always, I’ve had or take a second opportunity to repair or at least attempt to make up for that botched opportunity and usually (but not always) things have turned out okay. But still, it’s those occasions I missed or passed up — those opportunities are the ones I most regret. It’s probably bcz I’ll never know what could have come out of what should have been. But then… even as I share this I know this flies in the face of my strongly held belief that God is, indeed, sovereign. It is in these times I could be labeled a Calarminian. :-S I know God is sovereign and what will be will be — it’s just that I can’t ever seem to be fully reconciled to that fact in the face of missed or
rejected passed up opportunities.
For example: I may botch up talking with someone about the Lord — I may get all intense or neglect to be succinct or whatever and come away feeling like I really messed up that opportunity to share the gospel, to draw someone into conversation and prayerfully into the kingdom. But then I must consider that faith is of the Lord, and that person’s redemption is of the Lord — though He does use cracked pots to pour out His message of salvation and redemption.
My missed opportunities or passed up opportunities have been those times, though I may not have recognized it at the time, when I clearly had the grace of God to do this or that thing and I frittered away the time or I didn’t make a call or I made the wrong call or I thought my way of handling a situation would suffice or whatever… and an opportunity to do good, to help, to encourage, to correct, to confess an offense or whatever was missed or lost.
I can’t go back and recreate those opportunities — but I can seek to correct losses and offenses and as I do so, I must leave the results to the Lord and then I can use those missed or passed up opportunities to prompt me the next time such an opportunity arises, presents itself or even seems to be present. God is mercifully helping me through the years in His loving kindness, all my missteps, my failings, miscommunications, misunderstandings, resentment, fears, regrets, losses, etc., etc., to watch — really watch — for opportunities and seek to not miss them. All these problems, especially in the last couple of years, have surely taught me that opportunities come and go — good ones and difficult ones, and it’s really imperative to daily be in the Word, to daily be in prayer, to keep short accounts and, perhaps above all, to seek God’s will and direction for each of the opportunities He brings my way.
This phrase continually comes to mind: “God does not call the equipped, He equips the called.” So, that being understood, as responsibilities go, I know that mine is to watch and receive, His is to present and provide, mine is to obey, His is to guide, mine is to be willing , His is to be filling, mine is to be poured out, His is to be glorified.
Opportunities come and go… O, that I would be found faithful in them.