“But Moses protested again, “What if they won’t believe me or listen to me? What if they say, ‘The Lord never appeared to you’?” Then the Lord asked him, “What is that in your hand?” “A shepherd’s staff,” Moses replied. “Throw it down on the ground,” the Lord told him. So Moses threw down the staff, and it turned into a snake! Moses jumped back. Then the Lord told him, “Reach out and grab its tail.” So Moses reached out and grabbed it, and it turned back into a shepherd’s staff in his hand. “Perform this sign,” the Lord told him. “Then they will believe that the Lord, the God of their ancestors—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob—really has appeared to you.” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Now put your hand inside your cloak.” So Moses put his hand inside his cloak, and when he took it out again, his hand was white as snow with a severe skin disease. “Now put your hand back into your cloak,” the Lord said. So Moses put his hand back in, and when he took it out again, it was as healthy as the rest of his body. The Lord said to Moses, “If they do not believe you and are not convinced by the first miraculous sign, they will be convinced by the second sign. And if they don’t believe you or listen to you even after these two signs, then take some water from the Nile River and pour it out on the dry ground. When you do, the water from the Nile will turn to blood on the ground.” But Moses pleaded with the Lord, “O Lord, I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.””
I ran across this story from Exodus about a fella named Moses. It’s a pretty popular story that I’m sure most of you have heard but took something away from it today that really helped me see this relationship I have with God and who He is even deeper. I pray this message can open you up to see God in the bigness and awesomeness that He’s in and it can be an encouragement for you also!
Reading over this Word, there is so much that can be taken from it! The context surrounding this conversation between Moses and God is that God’s calling Moses to go into Israel and ask the Pharaoh to let the Israelites go. The Israelites who have been there for years now working as slaves, I don’t know about you but much like Moses I’d be afraid to go the king and ask this. Wouldn’t you?
In this conversation we can see so much into who we are but even more into who God is! Moses starts off these verses in doubt, “what if they don’t believe me?” Moses is obviously fearful and worried about how this will play out. Then God being who He is, gives Moses three different ways, “signs” which are completely AMAZING! Only miracles that God has the power to do. In that, God is giving Moses all the reasons why they will believe him, why they will believe that God has sent Him. But what lies deeper here isn’t just Moses’ worry and doubt over what the Pharaoh will think or say, Moses is in doubt that he can answer this call from God and walk out what God is calling him to do. Moses’ doubts root from himself. The first batch of doubts are more of excuses that unleash his real reason for being so afraid in the last verse, “what if I can’t say what you want me to say?” Basically what if I mess up?
Moses is revealing to God that his insecurities are about himself and his incapability to do this for God. So often, I know that throughout my day I focus on me, focus on what I can’t do, what I’m not good at or just my own weaknesses to live as God has called me to live. There are so many moments when I feel like I don’t have what it takes or don’t have the “skills” necessary to do what God wants me to do. Just like Moses, I focus on me and what I can’t do, then use that as an excuses why I won’t even try. We are just as human as Moses and can relate to him so much here, we have moments of doubt, where we feel inadequate or not equipped enough. But the same truth that God placed in front of Moses isn’t just signs to show us why we should be obedient, they are examples and moments where we see who God is, first off that God is saying, “don’t worry, I got you!” Even though you may not have what it takes I just want you to show up in obedience to what I’ve called you to and I’ll be with you, I’ll take care of the rest. How comforting is that? To know that God is with us and fights for us!!!
Then we see that God gives Moses every reason to change his focus from his doubts of what he’s got and we see a picture of every reason we should put all of our focus on God and what He can do which is ANYTHING!!! God’s signs may not look the same way as they do in this story for us but look around you, look at what all His power has created and all the amazing work He’s done in our lives. God gives us everything we need to trust and focus on who He is. When God calls us to live a certain way or do something for Him, although it’s out of our comfort zone, we may feel some initial doubt and worry about if we can do this but always go back to putting your eyes on God and what He can do, what He has done! If we focus on us and what we’ve got then of course we’ll live the rest of our lives making excuses and not ever moving forward into what God has called us to. WHY? Because we don’t have what it takes but we’ve got God and He has more than enough!
What’s really cool about this lesson of obedience, after God continues to show Moses more of Himself, Moses finally moves in obedience to God. Moses goes and eventually helps lead the Israelites out of Egypt where they were in slavery and into FREEDOM, into a place where they accepted God as their Savior! See what happens when we get ourselves out of the way and submit to God and His complete power in our lives? People are SAVED!!! If God calls you to something, it’s okay to feel some doubt in you but just remember that it’s not you that can be obedient or take that next step of faith, it’s God and who He is that moves us out of our self-doubt and into faith and trust in Him! Focus on God, who He is and what He can do!!! Moving, taking that next step of obedience becomes much easier knowing “I may not have enough, but I’m going to show up and God’s going to show out!!!!” It’s so awesome how God calls ordinary people to do extraordinary things!!! What separates ordinary from extraordinary is having God in it and the good thing is, He’s always in it, we just have to get ourselves out of it! It’s exciting and awesome to think of what God can and will do through people who are obedient to Him out of faith for who He is and what He can do!!!