Q. Perhaps you can advise me. I have carried a minister’s license for a lot of years, but have never used it to preach, although I am accused of being preachy. A lot of those years I have felt that I have been called to help spread the word. I currently reside in the Philippines and feel there is a need to fill and that I could fill it with the Holy Spirit guiding. The problem is I am a sinner. Not a terrible sinner. I was a lot worse but God has cleaned me up pretty well. Even so, I can’t seem to overcome the feeling of unworthiness because of the sins I still commit. I know where to find forgiveness for my weakness but still lack to courage to preach. Is this Satan working in me to stop me from sharing my blessings or am I just putting too much me in the equation? Your opinion would be appreciated.
A. First of all, it’s important to understand that we’re all sinners. There’s not even one believer who has ever succeeded in completely ridding his or her life of sin.
That said, A believer can experience one of two feelings after sinning. One is the conviction of the Holy Spirit, calling us to confess so we can be forgiven. The other is guilt, brought on by Satan trying to make us feel unworthy and even unforgivable.
The way to tell which of these feelings we’re experiencing is to look at which way we’re heading. If we’re being drawn closer to God, then it’s the Holy Spirit, but if we’re being drawn away from Him, it’s Satan. You say you know how to find forgiveness when you sin, so I would say Satan is trying to prevent you from preaching. But that’s just my opinion, so consider this.
God knew all of our sins before He went to the cross, and died for us anyway. Our behavior can’t surprise Him. If He’s calling you into service, He’s doing so with the full knowledge of all your most carefully hidden secrets, and He’s forgiven you for all of them (Colossians 2:14-14).
Take your desire to preach to Him in prayer along with your concerns about doing so, and ask for an unmistakable sign that He’s calling you. And when you get it, respond. It’s His strength that will sustain you, not yours.