When Everything Falls Apart
I got some very shocking news recently regarding my business. While I have no need to share details, mainly out of respect and care for those involved, suffice it to say that I was shaken to the core. For a moment, my greatest fears about my start-up were realized: This might not happen.
Then, by God’s providence, I was listening to a Newsboys song for a VeggieTales special, “The League of Incredible Vegetables.” I played it for Mom to share it with her, and she was reminded of the fate of Big Idea. She found an article written by Phil Vischer, and a statement he made triggered something in me: “I realized my good works had become an idol that defined me.”
Had MousePaw Games become an idol to me?
I realized today, with a good deal of shock, that it had. Upon thinking back, I realized how many times I prayed the stupid addendum prayer of “…as long as you don’t take away my company.”
Who am I to tell God what He can do with the calling that HE gave me? The shakeup recently threatened my idol, and for a week, I was living in fear of its removal. I had made MousePaw Games my god. Scary thought.
Only now have I been able to actually say, for the first time, not “God, make the company succeed in your time,” but “God, Your Will be done.”
Am I truly willing to sacrifice my Isaac? It’s a weird paradox. I know deep in my spirit that this company will not fail, that God has called us to do this. There have been so many miracles surrounding this startup, I’ve lost track. Yet, I still need to trust God to the point of my sacrificing my Isaac to Him.
It is a weird feeling to try and genuinely sacrifice something when I have absolutely no doubt that God will provide the ram.
But I’ve also realized that I MUST surrender this entire company to God if it has any chance of survival. We’re entering into a brutal field, where many of our competitors would have no problem doing everything they can to destroy us. We’re like little Israel entering into a promised land filled with giants, and if God isn’t with us, those giants are going to grind us into the dust.
It is so easy in business to take confidence in one’s own assets, legal strength, intellectual property, and team. In 1 Chronicles 21, King David takes a census of the whole of Israel, which angers God. Was the Lord angry about David knowing the size of Israel? No, as other times, God ordered census. He was angry about the motives: David was taking confidence in how many fighting men he had. He was trusting his own resources, instead of leaning entirely on God.
Have I been taking too much confidence in the miraculous strength of our operating agreement, the uniqueness of our intellectual property, and the giftings of our team? I would say so.
In the end, this incident is such a minor earthquake in my company. Recovering from it is not that big an obstacle with God’s help. The people involved are on amiable grounds with me. No one wants to rob anyone else, and we’re all still friends.
Yet, I think God allowed this partially on the grounds of, if I don’t learn to sacrifice my Isaac now, this lesson will have far higher stakes the next time. The Lord is merciful. He knew where my heart was, so he knocked my idol on its face. Methinks I need to sacrifice it completely to God, because if I set it back up, it’s gonna lose its head and hands, and that could be the end of things.
See, I’m learning that God doesn’t need me. Seriously, God doesn’t need any of us! But He wants me. He wants to use me. But He can find someone else. I am unique, loved, called, and yet…replaceable. That may sound cold, but hear me out…
As God’s children, we are loved and irreplaceable. Yet, as servants, God is not so compelled to keep us around that He will bend over backwards to do our will. He can use a donkey, for crying out loud. I am so grateful that He chooses to use me, but I have to keep reminding myself that God can pick up the entire concept and calling of MousePaw Games, and hand the entire thing to someone bloke in Australia, in the same manner that he handed it to me. He will not bless any venture which does not carry out His Will, which is NOT necessarily the same as ours.
As I’m typing this, now I’m asking God what He wants to do with this dream. It is His. I’m learning to say “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (Job 1:21b, NKJV)
I can already see the light at the end of the tunnel. I can see some amazing miracles that God is about to perform in MousePaw Games, and I’m excited to see what He’s going to do. There is no question in my mind that God is doing to do what He has planned in this industry. Whether or not He uses us – uses me – depends on whether or not I sacrifice my Isaac.
This is NOT my child. This is God’s child, whom He has chosen to give to me to raise.
So, Lord, here I am. I’m surrendering it all to you. You alone are in control. I’m letting it all fall and making the jump. Catch me according to Your Will.