Wednesday, January 9, 2008

I AM Bible study--Instrument of Wonders

The Preacher's Wife, Lisa, has an AWESOME Bible study for Women on the life of Moses called I AM. If you haven't checked it out yet, please do! I am (ha, ha, get it?) on lesson eight, Instrument of Wonders, which is looking at the beginning of Exodus 4.

Moses begins a litany of "yes buts"--but what if they don't believe me, but I'm not an eloquent speaker, PLEASE send someone one prone to yes-buts, I have complete sympathy for Moses. God met addressed his every concern, but by the end was losing patience. My favorite one is the first one--God tells Moses to throw down his staff. It turns into a serpent, a symbol of power in Egypt, and Moses runs away! From his OWN staff! God tells him to pick it up by the tail, and it turns back into a staff. Very cool. By not running away from his "problem", it goes back to being a plain ol' piece of wood.

It's also interesting to look at the progresion--first Moses says others won't accept him, then he says he isn't well enough equipped, and then he finally cuts to the chase and says, PLEASE choose someone else! Moses would rather continue herding sheep in the desert than do what the Lord God has equipped him to do--no wonder God's anger burns against him. One thing that shows me is that if God asks me to do it, He will take care of preparing other people's hearts and He will equip me--I just need to be willing to accept the assignment. Although I'm sure I'd be scared and nervous, I'd rather deal with people's reactions than with God's anger burning against me!

I bet part of Moses's unwillingness to go is that he had already tried to save his people--and was totally unsuccessful. Not only did he not succeed, he was rejected by the Israelites themselves. And now God was sending him right back, to the same place. That's a pretty big piece of humble pie to swallow. But God knew that--and I'm sure that contributed to Moses's humility, there was no mistaking that saving Israel was God's doing, not Moses'.

And God has not only empowered Moses to pick up the serpent (our old problems we'd rather run from than face), he's empowered us, too. 1 John 2:14 says, "I have written to you young men, because you are strong, and the Word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one." That's pretty cool! I can't think of any situations I'm avoiding or running from, and I'm trying to be better about just saying "Yes, Lord" instead of "yes, but..." but this lesson was a good reminder of how God does use us, ESPECIALLY in our weaknesses and failures.


Kim said...

Interesting and good thoughts. I enjoy Moses and how God takes ordinary men (with plenty of faults) and uses them to do extraordinary things...if only they get over fears and obey.

Jen said...

I can relate to the idea that Moses probably felt as if he had already blown his opportunity. I'm so glad that, after trying to work out God's will in my own flesh and completely failing, He takes me and teaches me and corrects my ways, and then sets it all up again so I can get it right. He never lets me rest in failure, but sets me in restorative grace.