Matthew R. Perry

Your Burning Bush Speaks, Part IV: I Don’t Have What It Takes

In Church Life, Missions on October 27, 2007 at 1:47 pm

(Be sure to read the Introduction, Part I , Part II and Part III to this blog series.)

In Exodus 4:10-12, we read:

But Moses said to the Lord, “Oh, my Lord, I am not eloquent, either in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but I am slow of speech and of tongue.” [11] Then the Lord said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? [12] Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.”

First, Moses doesn’t know what to say, now he claims he cannot say it! Was he afraid that he forgot how to speak the courtly language with which he grew up in Egypt? I don’t know. Did he have a speech impediment? Possibly, although we don’t know for sure. We do know that he felt quite inadequate and did not possess the necessary gifts.
I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard a similar reason by many well-meaning Christians who, when confronted by a task of great importance, will often say, “That’s just not my thing — I’m really not gifted in this area.” We tend to be well aware of our weaknesses and shortcomings — and if we aren’t, others have a way of making us quite aware. Many understand the need to learn how to evangelize and tell people about the Gospel, but too often the fear or just the lack of desire to do this makes us says, “That’s just not my thing.” Same with singing in the choir, working with us in the community, working in an area of ministry such as working with children, youth, or adults; or even coming to Sunday School. These are things that we may believe that these things are important, but we just don’t think we have what it takes to pull it off.

How did God respond? In Exodus 4:11-12, he says, “Who has made man’s mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak.” Moses was hoping that this reason, this excuse, would be legitimate. After all, what boss would send someone to do a job unless that person was gifted to do so. Sometimes, we feel as if we have to remind God of who we are and where our strengths lie. We think we know where we should be and what we should be doing. We draw our own little box and say, “I know me — I really do!”

Tomorrow, we are going to start going over not just an evangelism course but a great discipleship class called “Two Ways To Live.” This training is so different because it starts at a point where it should have — with God as Creator. This doctrine of God as Creator must be recovered in our churches. For if God created us, then he wired us and knows best how we operate. And when He calls us to do a task and be obedient, we know that since He made us in His image, He knows what we are capable of — especially when He leads and strengthens us.

You don’t have what it takes, you say? That statement is rife with unbelief in Creator God. He has what it takes to work through you!

For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
[26] For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. [27] But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; [28] God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, [29] so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. [30] He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption (1 Corinthians 1:25-30, ESV).

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