I can do all things through him who strengthens me. [Philippians 4:13 (ESV)]
Years ago, facing overwhelming responsibilities, I stood in the middle of the Home Depot garden center, broke into tears, and prayed, “God, I just can’t do it all.” A very gentle voice said, “You don’t have to!” and then put into my mind the names of people who could help me in the many tasks that lay ahead. Not long ago, when planning another major event, I approached that same feeling of desperation and felt much like a gerbil on an exercise wheel—running hard and getting nowhere. I was running out of ideas, time, energy and patience. Circumstances over which I had no control were part of the problem but so was I! Pride made me both hesitant to ask for help and reluctant to share the glory. Fortunately, I’ve learned a few things since that day at Home Depot so I did some serious praying and humbly asked for help. Friends and family came together in the most amazing way and incredible solutions appeared for what had seemed to be unsolvable problems. It was as if God was saying, “See, you can do it—just not all by yourself!”
Solomon’s kingdom flourished because the wise king delegated responsibility; he appointed governors over twelve districts, another governor over them, and eleven other high officials. Even Jesus knew He couldn’t do it all when He lived as a man. He chose seventy-two disciples to act as advance men in the towns He would later visit. Later, when the Apostles learned that the widows weren’t getting their share of the food, they asked the church to appoint seven men to take on that responsibility. Paul appointed elders in every church, delegated leadership responsibilities to men like Timothy and Titus, and encouraged them to find other trustworthy men to pass on God’s word.
God gave Eve to Adam for more than procreation; “I will make a helper who is just right for him.” [Genesis 2:18] We’re not meant to go it alone. When Solomon delegated, his kingdom prospered and grew. When Jesus delegated, He trained the disciples to pass on the faith. When the Apostles delegated, they were better able to use their gift of teaching. When Paul delegated to other evangelists and elders, he demonstrated his trust in their ability. When I delegated, the result was far better than I could have imagined and I was able to share the joy of accomplishment with all who helped.
God is God and we are not. As mere mortals, we can only do our best. Sometimes, however, doing our best means allowing other people to do it! We have been instructed to serve one another but, for that to happen, we must be willing to let others serve!
Be strong enough to stand alone, smart enough to know when you need help, and brave enough to ask for it. [Ziad K. Abdelnour]