Summary: We have great potential to do greater things for God but many times, our eyesight are limited and we only see the problem not the solution. In this message, we will study the life of Gideon and how God's plan unfolded before his eyes.
There was a story of a man who had an experiment with the fleas.
Fleas are wingless insects with mouth parts adapted for piercing skin and sucking blood living in mammals and birds or dogs.
He put some fleas in a jar with a covered top on it.
Obviously, the fleas jump and hit the top over and over again.
Then, as he watched them jump and hit the top, he noticed something interesting.
The fleas continue to jump, but they were no longer jumping high enough to hit the top.
Then, he continued his experiment by taking off the cover of the bottle.
He noticed that the fleas continued to jump, but they did not jump out of the jar even if there was no more cover.
He repeated it, but it was the same thing, they won't jump out because they can't.
His conclusion was simple.
The fleas have conditioned themselves in their minds to jump just so high.
Once they have conditioned themselves to jump that high, that's all they can do.
They give up and could not reach higher.
Many times, people do the same thing.
They restrict themselves and never reach their greatest potential even if they able.
Just like the fleas, they fail to jump higher, failed to reach their dreams.
They think that it is all they can do, that is all there is in life.
They don't know that God has much greater and better plan ahead.
If this is for you, I want you to read this verse carefully.
Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) " 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Many of you have memorized this verse.
In fact, you might have known this verse for many years already.
But still you have not yet discovered fully God's plan for your life.
You have not yet reached your maximum potential.
Just like those fleas, we only reach the barest minimum in life.
God wants us to believe that we can do greater things when God is on our side.
Because the text tells us also that "He knows" this plan for us.
That means, God knows or understands this plan from the very beginning to the very end but we don't know that.
His knowledge and understanding no one can fathom and is very much different from our own knowledge and understanding.
And then, it says here that the goals or purposes of His plan for us are: "to prosper us and to give us a hope and a future."
He does not intend to harm us in any way.
He intends to give us a great future where we could ultimately look back and appreciate altogether how it all unfolds right before our very eyes.
Brothers and sisters, God has a great plan for you and me.
He wants us to jump out of the bottle because it has no more cover.
The sky is the limit to what you can achieve.
Let me tell you another story.
Not about flies, but this time, a real person named Anthony Burgess.
He was 40 when he learned that he had only one year to live.
He had a brain tumor that would kill him within a year.
He knows he had a battle on his hands.
He was completely broke at the time, and he didn't have anything to leave behind for his wife, Lynne, soon to be a window.
Burgess had never been a professional novelist in the past, but he always knew the potential was inside him to be a writer.
So, for the sole purpose of leaving royalties behind for his wife, he put a piece of paper into a typewriter and began writing.
He had no certainty that he would even be published, but he couldn't think of anything else to do.
"It was January of 1960," he said, "and according to the prognosis, I had a winter and spring and summer to live through, and would die with the fail of the leaf."
In that time Burgess wrote energetically, finishing five and a half novels before the year was through.
But Burgess did not die.
His cancer had gone into remission and then disappeared altogether.
In his long and full life as a novelist, he wrote more than 70 books, but without the death sentence from cancer, he may not have written at all.
Many of us are like Anthony Burgess, hiding greatness inside, waiting for some external emergency to bring it out.
Ask yourself what you'd do if you had Anthony Burgess's original predicament.
" If I had just a year to live, how would I live differently? What exactly would I do?"