Redefine The Possible

The Latest Word from John Ed Mathison

This summer Spencer West accomplished what many people would consider an impossible dream. He scaled Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s highest mountain!

The amazing thing is that Spencer only used his hands to climb. This 31-year-old American was born with a spinal disorder that required both legs to be amputated as a child. Very few people will be capable of scaling Mount Kilimanjaro, even if they are experienced climbers – Spencer did it without any legs!

Kilimanjaro is a 19,300-foot climb. Spencer did it in seven days. The purpose of his feat was to raise $750,000 for a Kenyan charity.

Impossible – most folks would say “yes”, but not Spencer. He said, “We all have the ability to redefine what is possible.”

“Redefine what is possible” – that is a great attitude for life. We get in our minds that some things are impossible, and then God comes along and puts a different vision in our mind. He helps us begin to see what is possible.

Many people ran track and tried to break the 4-minute mile. Everybody considered that an impossibility. One day a young man by the name of Roger Bannister decided that it was as much a psychological problem as a physical problem that was involved in breaking the 4-minute mile. He changed his way of thinking. He began to “redefine what is possible.” He became the first person to break the 4-minute mile!

Life is filled with such illustrations. Look at the space program. Putting a man on the moon was considered to be impossible back in the 60’s. President John F. Kennedy challenged this nation to “redefine what is possible.” God raised up a high school boy named Neil Armstrong who also was dreaming a big dream and redefining what is possible. I remember watching television that Sunday night in July 1969. Everybody let out church early. We wanted to see if the impossible could become possible. It did!

Jesus was constantly challenging people to redefine what is possible. An angel came to a virgin named Mary and told her that God was going to cause her to have a child. Her immediate response was “that is impossible.” God spoke through the angel to put a dream in her life that helped Mary redefine what is possible. (Luke 1:34-37)

One day Jesus was teaching and people had been listening to Him all day. They were hungry. There was no food. When Jesus invited the disciples to feed the crowd, their reaction was that it would be impossible. They had already figured out mathematically how much it would cost per person. They had the math to prove it was impossible. Jesus invited them to “redefine what is possible.” He took a few loaves and a couple of fish and turned the impossible into the possible. (Matthew 14:13-21)

Impossible things never become possible until somebody dares to dream and let God help them “redefine the possible.” Every organization a vision statement that affirms that things do not have to continue the way they are – “rethink the possible.” Churches do not need to get locked down into a mode of thinking that reflects the status quo as being what God desires.

Where is God leading you to “redefine the possible”?

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