Overcoming Obstacles to Your Unabashed Ask
Embarrassment, Who am I to ask for Great Things?
By Lauren Hasson
Awkward. Self Conscious. E-m-b-a-r-r-a-s-s-e-d!
Embarrassment seems to bring its good friends awkward and self-conscious right along with it. I have even laughed before about the awkwardness of awkwardness! It’s as if once you start feeling awkward, it just multiplies on itself. No one likes the embarrassment of feeling self-conscious. We feel foolish. We feel small. Most of all we feel inadequate.
My embarrassing ask.
As you know, one of my great passions has been to break down the walls of the church and bring leaders together who will start a movement of God that is larger than any one single church or organization. I have longed to see something so rare, so magnificent, that is brought about by a tribe of people who love each other well, enjoy each other’s company, and are sharing their gifts to see a movement of God in our city.
I have received prophetic words over this. They butted up against my own belief system that I’m too small, too insignificant, unconnected. And... I’m a woman. My husband doesn’t have the same passion for the city that I do, but he supports me 100 percent. Would this have to be a “team effort”?
I knew that part of this unfolding plan was to have regional meetings that would ignite relationships. Some years ago, I gathered a group of intercessors praying over our city for a year and a half, and we all came with the same answer, “Family!” His foundation for this movement would be family, a group of people who so liked each other that they were drawn to champion each other’s visions and dreams.
Holy Spirit brought me to a conference for Kingdom businesses in Santa Barbara. I was completely wrecked by one speaker who was going after the restoration of broken dreams. I awkwardly approached him at one of the luncheons and shared the power of how this affected me. He shared vulnerably about one of his own broken dreams that had not yet been restored, ending with how the enemy always attempts to steal our promised land. Something significant shifted inside of me.
As I left the conference, I heard Holy Spirit say, “He will be the one to start the foundation of what I’m calling you to do. He carries family.”
“Well, how am I going to get this world-class speaker to come to my event?”
After continually knocking, a series of doors began to slowly open until somehow, miraculously, he said “yes!” I was perplexed as to how it would happen, and laughed that I had used up all my measure of favor to get him to agree. Everything was now full steam ahead. I could see it in all its glory!
And then..... people started cancelling. “Out of town.” “Sorry, can’t make it.” I was two weeks out and I had twenty-five people showing up! Embarrassment surrounded me, humiliating me with how insignificant, how small, how foolish I was to think that I could bring in someone of this caliber and people would respond to me! And of course, that simple “What was I thinking???” began to be a mantra swirling around in my head.
“I can’t pull this off!” Began the monologue with God. “I thought you said this was a great idea and this was ‘the guy’ who was going to start it all off. Everyone who said they were all in, are now all out. Maybe I should just cancel!” Anything to get me through the humiliation of what I now perceived as utter defeat.
Somewhere in the middle of the monologue, peace began to hit me in full force. “Invite everyone I tell you to invite. Do it with confidence. Trust Me. It is going to be different than you imagined, but it will happen. I am growing you in risk and teaching you how to learn to push past your fear.” The next few weeks were full, pressing me to my max to make it happen, but a partnership of trust began as I listened to His strategies, and relinquished control. My big ask was broken down to small, individual asks that He was waiting to answer.
Little did I know that this inauspicious beginning for Lifestreams, was also the beginning of a life-long friendship with Danny and Sheri Silk.
Let’s break it down.
If I’m asking for something that is way beyond my ability to do alone, without God, the scope of what I’m hoping for should naturally make me feel small, insignificant, untalented. I realize the large gap between where I am and what I’m hoping for. When I give in to embarrassment, my negative neurons will support my decision, and physiologically attempt to keep me in a familiar pattern of my current identity.
Embarrassment hits the core of my identity by saying I’m being presumptuous to ask for something great. It alienates my identity from who I am with Christ, pointing out who I am without Him. It’s insidious voice seeks to keep me diminished in pursuing my purposes and calls me to be content with what I have. It often sounds like, “Who are you to ask for this? He wants someone much more – insert qualified, intelligent, righteous, holy, etc. – than you!
He’s already given me great things.... should I ask for more?
Let’s take a look at the worst ask ever!
Jesus has just finished telling His disciples that He is about to be suffer greatly and be betrayed. Immediately after Judas’ betrayal, the disciples begin arguing about who is going to be the greatest in the Kingdom. Hmmm, I’ve just told you I’m about to be sacrificed and you’re arguing over position. Ridiculously presumptuous, hurtful, obtuse. Jesus interrupts their argument and says that kings are obsessed about how others see them, but they will be servants who lead. In the middle of their embarrassing question, His response is not to humiliate them, but to call out their true identity. He answers this ask, not by pointing out that they are ready to abandon Him, but by reminding them of who they are to Him.
“Because you have stood with me through all my trials and ordeals, I give you your destiny: I am promising you the kingdom realm that the Father has promised me. We will celebrate in this kingdom and you will feast with me at my table. And each of you will be given a throne, twelve thrones in all, and you will be made rulers on thrones to judge the tribes of Israel.” Luke 22: 24,28,29
How will you choose to press through your discomfort and the lies of inadequacy this week to know who you are in Him in a greater way?
Start with asking Him to call out your true identity in the midst of your embarrassment so He is able to restore you in your rightful position to ask, ask, ask for all things. He’s so honored when we ask beyond what we are currently capable of. It enhances our partnership with Him!
We’re looking forward to hearing about your audacious, unabashed ask!