"Take a step back sir."
Those were the words that I heard when I stepped foot into my first art gallery.
As I geared up for my recent trip to New York for a week of school assemblies, I was nervous. Everyone knows that New Yorkers can be brash, abrasive, and strong willed. I was afraid that my jokes weren't going to be funny enough or that my story wasn't extreme enough. I really couldn't see the whole picture. I couldn't see the reality that for whatever reason God had brought me to New York.
I have sat with leaders and artists from all over the country who have told me that I should never go to New York unless I really wanted to be discouraged.
My first day in the city, I met with leaders and asked them to give me their impressions of the culture. They confirmed for me what so many others had warned me of, "These kids are going to be rough, bro."
As I drove down the busy streets of New York, every piece of graffiti on a bridge made me nervous. Every time I looked at a tall building or saw people hustling on the streets, I pictured myself choking under pressure.
Sometimes being a little bit intimidated helps you become better.
I ended up speaking at four schools in New York. I met some incredible young people. We had a massive concert event where we invited students from all over Queens, New York to come here the gospel...and they did.
Sometimes you have to take a step back and realize who is painting the picture. If you were the brush chosen for a particular painting, don't live in fear thinking you are not good enough. You are the brush for this portion of the story.
The story of eternity is so much larger than what happened in New York. Students gave their lives to Jesus for the first time. They are getting plugged into a healthy thriving church community.
God was glorified in New York. Period.
If you are afraid of something God is calling you to, I encourage you to take a step back and realize that the story is massive! Let that be a reminder of who is writing it and let God use you. If you were the brush chosen for a particular part of the story, take confidence in the one painting the picture.