I have been doing a read-the-Bible-in-a-year program for 2019 and it has been really interesting. They mix it up in the sense that it isn’t read Genesis through the end, they give you an Old Testament and a New Testament every day and it has been great as it keeps it interesting. Which I think will be invaluable once we get to the whole Deuteronomy and Leviticus thing. LOL! You all know what I am talking about.
But as I was reading through Exodus the other morning, this story really grabbed my attention and wouldn’t let go.
God was commissioning Moses to do the Lord’s work among the Israelites and Moses wasn’t having it. I’m not talking about dragging his feet, this dude was dead set against fulfilling his calling. I’m sure he didn’t see it as a calling. He looked at the gift God was handing him and cringed. I can just picture Moses hunching over, trying not to gag on the fear that was roiling in his stomach as he stepped backwards and away from the task that God was calling him to.
Not once did Moses reject the Lord’s calling, but numerous times. Let me paint the picture for you. The Lord waxes eloquent on what he will do through mlMoses’s hands and Moses point blank says “nah-uh” and shakes his head.
The Lord, being the understanding and compassionate God that he is, gave Moses two signs. He turned his flipping walking stick into a snake! Like, I’m on board after that. Then, he has Moses stick his hand into his shirt and pull it out again. It is covered in leprosy. He has him do it once more and it is completely healed.
God was doing something very special that He doesn’t just do for anyone. He was taking the time to show Moses that His power was his for the asking. He was laying it all out for Moses to see and holding it out as a gift. “This is all yours.” He then tells him of two more signs that He will perform through Moses if the Egyptians still don’t believe that God means business.
And after ALL THAT, Moses replies again in fear.
“And Moses said to the Lord, O Lord, I am not eloquent or a man of words, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; for I am slow of speech and have a heavy and awkward tongue.”
Moses was petrified. But not just of any old thing. The main reason that was keeping him shackled in walking forward in what God had for him was his fear of man.
At this point in the story my own heart started to hurt. This is a struggle of mine and I know it. The words that came out of Moses’s mouth wasn’t over the fact that the Egyptians might try to kill him or his family. It wasn’t about fearing them not listening to him and doing what the Lord ordered of them. It wasn’t about his fear of failure. He didn’t voice anything of those.
It was about his fear of what they might think of him because he couldn’t speak well in public.
God had just laid out to Moses this incredible part in the story that he was writing for His children. He gifted him with the lead part to act out His will to the Egyptians and the Israelites and to make his name known. To deliver his chosen ones from bondage. Not only that, but He was gifting Moses with God’s own power to be used to prove His love and His intent for the people of Israel.
Moses saw all that and turned away in fear. He gave all of that away for a little bit of discomfort.
But it doesn’t end there. God then explains that He is the creator. I am God. I can do what I please. “Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and will teach you what you shall say.”
“And he said, Oh, my Lord, I pray you, send by the hand of some other whom You will send.”
Are you kidding me? God just told him that He had it all covered. Moses didn’t have to worry about a thing. He was just going to be the mouthpiece for God’s own words. God was going to take care of it all.
While we know that God is not an angry, spiteful Lord, he did get mad at Moses. I would be too, honestly. Moses had rejected the Lords calling so many times in a row that God gave up and turned his plans over to Moses’s brother Aaron.
Guys, I don’t want to be like Moses. I don’t want my daily fears and insecurities to cripple my effectiveness for the Lord. Not only that, but I don’t want God giving a calling and a gift that He gave me to someone else because I was too afraid to use it.
Listen to His voice. When He calls, don’t turn away. Don’t cower in fear. Don’t walk away. Don’t argue. His spirit is with you. The worst thing that could happen is you are wrong. Like, so what?
Listen to that voice that prompts you to offer to pray with someone. Listen to that voice that asks you to email someone you hardly know to ask how they are doing. Listen to that voice that tells you to walk up to a complete stranger and say something. Listen to that voice that tells you to write a book, perform a song, create something you never thought of creating.
God won’t argue with you. He’ll move on and give that gift to someone else. Is that really what we want? Do we want to be like Moses and despise the calling that God has put on our life? All because of a little fear? Let’s say no. Let’s be a brave, fearless generation that isn’t afraid to walk in what God has for us. He gave each of us a commission. It’s doesn’t necessarily look like calling an entire people group out of bondage. And we don’t have to wait for a Moses moment when God shows up in a burning bush and calls us to something huge. He already has. He has placed His spirit in you that constantly communes with you and speaks His truth to you. Do we dare to listen? Do we dare to follow and obey? Do we dare to be fearless?
By God’s Grace,