God has been teaching me lately! Hopefully, you will learn from the lessons I am currently learning.
Last year God gave me a very clear calling. He clearly told my husband and I to produce a marriage show for BTV. I do not know ANYTHING about TV production – or at least I didn’t last June when God laid this clear vision in my mind. I have since learned a zillion and one things!
I have been doing public speaking all around the world for about 20 years so I am used to being “in front” of the camera, but the behind the scenes stuff – I didn’t have a clue. Yet, God was clear in the path He wanted us to take.
Then I realised how much it costs to produce a quality television show – YIKES! So I approached BTV with the concept of the show and was told to produce a pilot out of pocket and then bring it back to see if they would even want to air it. Thankfully, they did like it but they referred me to look for a corporate sponsor.
For one year, I went to countless businesses and government ministries all over the city. Everyone loved the idea of producing a show that would strengthen families.
In fact, people applauded it explaining how a practical show that strengthened families would help so many social ills since strong families are the foundation of strong individuals. Yet no one wanted to put one thebe towards producing it. I was confused. My husband and I knew God had said to do it.
We were in unity and 100% convinced of God’s calling so why was it taking so long to find a sponsor? Surely if God said to do it, He could provide?
Around three months ago, my father, in America, after watching my husband and I talk to a hundred and one people seeking sponsorship volunteered to try and see if he could ask his American friends to help sponsor it.
Slowly, God began to provide a few people that said they would help joining with us in the vision to strengthen a nation through strengthening the family unit.
The money hasn’t all been raised, but my husband and I decided to claim Philippians 1:6, which states that when God starts a good work HE is faithful to carry it to completion. 1 Thessalonians 5:24 says that He who calls you is faithful and He will do it. Psalms 37:5 says we should commit our ways to God, trust in Him and He will do this (give us the desires of our heart).
The key pattern – HE WILL DO IT. Not me… not my efforts… HE WILL DO IT! The God who calls us asks one thing of us – DELIGHT in HIM. Love Him. Seek Him first. The details – HE WILL HANDLE.
Here is the thing – I “get” that theologically, but practically I struggle. What does that mean? Does that mean I don’t need to call people to get an audience each week? Does that mean that it will always be smooth sailing with studio rental logistics? What does it mean practically that He will do it?
God specifically told me to have an audience for this show. (You can go to the Facebook page, Talking with the Thabas, to visualise exactly what the show looks like!) The dream is that if 20 random couples from all walks of life asks questions about marriage then those questions they ask will represent what the average Motswana couple is asking but perhaps they don’t have a marriage mentor to ask these questions.
I thought it would be easy to get 40 people to agree to give up an hour of their Saturday to come be on TV and get free marriage advice. Turns out most people are very non-committal and say something like this “sounds cool.
We will see what we are doing Saturday and check it out if we have time.” TV productions don’t work with that kind of person. With the amount of money that goes into every filming, I need to KNOW I have the people in the audience. I found myself stressing.
“God you called me to do this. You have brought me to this point that the shows are now being filmed and I have faith that you will provide the financial provisions to cover production costs, but getting this audience is taking up time I want to be spending with you and praying over the show and asking you for wisdom for what to say!” HELP!
God led me to Joshua 23:10-11, “One of you routs a thousand, because the LORD your God fights for you, just as he promised. 11 So be very careful to love the LORD your God.”
I just felt like God was saying Ashley please – how many ways do I have to tell you this?? If this is MY vision, then it is MY BATTLE! YOU just BE CAREFUL not to get too busy to LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD!!! That is your job!
Ashamed, I went back before God. Here I was on a worthy mission to do what God called me to do and yet somehow HIS VISION had become MY VISION and now the weight was on MY SHOULDERS to fight the battle! God was saying… RELAX – my burden is LIGHT.
YOUR job is to trust me. If it was EASY to trust me, it wouldn’t take faith. But if I called you, I WILL DO THIS, so your job is to remain in me and I WILL BEAR THE FRUIT!
What has God called you to? Are you stressing about seeing that dream fulfilled? Might I encourage you to have faith that if God called you to it, He is faithful to see it through without causing you so much stress you no longer have time to rest in Him.
Might I be so bold to say that if you do NOT have the time to seek Him first, you are busier than He intended because He would never call you to a life that doesn’t have time for fellowship with Him!
Ashley Thaba is a popular motivational speaker and life coach. She is the author of the well-known books, Dive In and Conquering the Giants.
She also facilitates corporate team building and wellness activities. You can view some of her work on her YouTube channel: Ashley Thaba.