Symphony of Me

I would say that I am a man of action. A lot of my doing gives me self-worth. So to sit back and do little is severely unnerving. 

This week with selling our house, many things were out of my control. I just had to wait and trust the process. We had to schedule our realtor, mortgage lender, carpet installers, and pool light repair guy because I didn’t have the skills or experience to execute it all and do it all right. Waiting and sitting back while others do the work is not the sweet spot of my personality. I absolutely hate it. 

I’m convinced God knows that about me and sent me a little encouragement this week. On Wednesday, this verse showed up right when I was about to lose it.

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans.”
Proverbs‬ ‭16:3‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Then on Thursday, this verse dropped into my lap.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 35:5-6

Two timely reminders that if I give up control and seek His best way, the results are far better than I can ask or imagine. 

But give up control? Nah, I don’t think so. That is too hard, too scary, with too unpredictable an outcome. 

Ever since that big punk kid in second grade asked me, “What are you gonna do about it?” while taking my Star Wars Action figure and walking away, I decided that there was plenty I could do about it. I was going to do everything I could, never to be put in that spot again. As a bonus, over time, I realized the world rewards a doer, a hustler.

Can you hear the soundtrack playing in the background of this thinking? “Me, me, me, me, me, meeeee!” Just like a singer warming up their voice.

Two of the many things I have learned being a pastor is that hurt people – hurt people – and hurt people often have a hard time not focusing on themselves. I have compassion and understanding for both mindsets. But this is where it gets interesting with God. He says He wants to meet you in your pains and coping mechanisms. It’s His #1 mission. 

Today, He gave me this reminder:

“I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” Psalms 40:1-2

David wrote that about our God, and it still stands firm today. We have a God who is wholeheartedly interested in leading us from our way to His way for our gain, our best. 

If I can just dial in some patient dependence on His direction, He promises time and time again that we can’t lose. He will turn a symphony of Me into a beautiful Chorus of We.

I’ve got some tough questions for us to think about this week. Which one of your greatest strengths was born from a moment of pain? And even though that strength may have treated you well, does it need to be traded for the new God-designed model?

If this spoke to you and you relate, throw a comment below. I would love to know I am not alone in this.

In His service and at yours!


Published by Shawn McCarthy

While serving as the Weekend Experience Pastor at Seacoast Church, I felt God prompting me to share the moments when He would speak His truth into my life through scripture in a way that made sense to me, giving me tangible ways to learn, grow and lead. These promptings turned into weekly emails that I would send my small groups and volunteer teams. I found myself enjoying the process of digging deeper into God’s Word, being stretched by the writing process, and encouraging others in the faith. My lovely wife, Anna, challenged me to begin this blog, so these moments that I have come to call, my “Red-Letter Moments,” can find a home. My prayer is that you will find hope, comfort, and inspiration here, and above all, you will come to know that the God of the universe loves you and desires a personal relationship with you.”

4 thoughts on “Symphony of Me

    1. Sure needed this word today. Proverbs 3:5-6 was preaching to me this week. Father God sure is faithful to be strong when I’m so weak—leaning into Him and not my own understanding! Thanks for sharing!


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