When I consider the question, I often look at what I hold physically in that moment in time. Perhaps it is the wooden spoon I am using to stir batter. Perhaps it is the iron as I press a shirt. Perhaps it is my camera, my journal, my Bible, or a favorite book.
For Moses, it was a staff that was used to demonstrate the power of God to Pharaoh. For David, it was a sling, which felled Goliath. In both these biblical examples, the things were commonplace to the men who used them and yet God used the commonplace to do something extraordinary.
The more serious question I then ponder is what do I consider commonplace or ordinary, why do I view these things in that way, and what might they become when submitted to God?
Gutzon Borglum looked at a mountainside in the Black Hills of South Dakota and envisioned his sculptor’s hands creating what we know as Mt. Rushmore. He used tools that were common to him along with a vision of what they could create even though it had never been done before. He saw something no one else did and created it so we could all see the wonder.
Theodore Roosevelt in an address at Carnegie Hall in 1912 said, “We, here in America, hold in our hands the hope of the world, the fate of the coming years; and shame and disgrace will be ours if in our eyes the light of high resolve is dimmed, if we trail in the dust the golden hopes of men.” He saw something, believed something that was and also was yet to come with both the potential and the responsibility to act wisely with what had been placed in our hands as a nation.
These realities give me pause. What do I hold in my hand that could become extraordinary? What do I see that others may not see and how can I give them a glimpse of it?
I can only answer that when I risk discovering what it is for me. Then, I must believe in what I see as Moses, David, Gutzon Borglum, Theodore Roosevelt, and countless others did, but I must also gain courage to act on it and discover in that process what God saw all along.