“When I was young, I said to God, ‘God, tell me the mystery of the universe.’ But God answered, ‘That knowledge is for me alone.’ So I said, ‘God, tell me the mystery of the peanut.’ Then God said, ‘Well, George, that’s more nearly your size.’” -George Washington Carver
George Washington Carver was born into slavery in the mid 19th Century in Missouri. He went on to become a world famous scientist. Because he was frail and sickly as a child, he worked as a gardener. As a result, he had plenty of time to investigate, wander the woods and fan into flame his natural curiosity for all things scientific. Although his ambition was much bigger, God gave him one thing to focus on: the peanut. As a result of his relentless experiments on that shell covered protein bullet, he discovered over 300 uses for the peanut, including peanut butter (Praise the Lord!)
Too many times we, as Christians, want to conquer the world, but God is calling us to something seemingly much smaller. But when we apply laser like focus onto our God calling in the power that He provides, the results can be astounding and abundant. In the words of DL Moody, “Give me a person who says, ‘This one thing I do, and not these fifty things I dabble in.’”
We live in a generation of Christians who dabble. We dabble in books. We dabble in apps. We dabble in entertainment. We dabble in church. We dabble in this. We dabble in that. But what if we made the one thing we do the very cause of Christ himself?
Jesus focused on the peanut. In Luke 19:10 he said, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost.” He wasn’t a dabbler. Everything he did from between his baptism and ascension was focused on reaching and rescuing the lost.
The peanut I’m focusing on is energizing a generation to evangelize their world. As the President of Dare 2 Share I have the privilege of working with youth leaders to build gospel-advancing youth ministries, which results in teens relationally and relentlessly reaching their friends for Christ.
From this obsessive focus, we have developed conferences, camps, curriculum, books, videos and apps. Lately we’ve witnessed pastors in some of these churches adopt and adapt our training material to equip the adults in their churches to share their faith. We’ve also heard recent stories of how God is using our training materials worldwide to equip pastors and their people to evangelize effectively.
This doesn’t mean I’m changing my focus. It simply means that when you focus on one thing obsessively over time it can often be used in other ways for other audiences. Occasionally I get asked “Why don’t you expand into doing evangelism training conferences for adults?” or “What about doing more discipleship-centered curriculum?”
My answer to all this is I’m focusing on the peanut God gave me to focus on.
May we, like George Washington Carver, focus on the peanut. May we, like Jesus, focus on reaching the lost.
Greg Stier is a husband, a father, a preacher, an author, a twitchy revolutionary and a fanatic for Jesus. He's the President of Dare 2 Share Ministries which has led thousands of students to Jesus and equipped thousands more to reach their world with the gospel. He blogs at GregStier.org.