The Return To God: Part IV – God Will Send You …

I recently re-read the book of Exodus. Imagine how mind blowing it was to be Moses and go through all that. I got the following things out of that story of Moses on the Mountain with God (Exodus Chapter 3).

God will send you to do a task.

The craggy earth gave way to what appeared to be good grazing ground, and a pool of water. Mount Horeb was considered a holy mountain, but Jethro, his father in law, happened to have exclusive rights to that stretch of real estate. One minute, you are a prince of Egypt, and here you are, 40 years later, herding sheep that don’t even belong to you. But, since you married the bosses daughter, you need to do your share.  Ahh  Zipporah, what a babe. Moses knew he had really lucked out when he married her. In their more frisky moments, he called her “Zippo“, because she was such a fiery wench. Little did Moses know that Bikers all around the world would be lighting their cigarettes with a lighter named after her. Her fiery disposition could, however, be a bit difficult to deal with. She was a hometown girl, and had a good gig what with her dad being the High Priest of Midian, AND a wealthy land owner. She wasn’t all that impressed with that whole, “I USED to be a Prince in Egypt.”, thing. Oh well, the land of the Midianites wasn’t so bad, and life was sure simpler out here than it was in Egypt. OK, maybe people didn’t blow trumpets and bow every time you entered a room, but still, being the son-in-law of the boss had its’ advantages.

The sheep were irritable and wanted to stop, and were giving him little irritated glances that told him “A Shepherd SHEPS, so step on it!!” He let them find the grass, and decided he’d grab some water, eat a snack, and maybe relax a bit. But as he was walking to the pond, he saw a thing he never had seen before. A bright light, looking like fire, inside a bush, and the bush was not being burned.  He definitely wanted to check that out, as all he had been seeing for days was the rear ends of sheep. The change of scenery was inviting.

He approached the burning bush with some sense of amazement. The closer he got, the faster he wanted to go. This is where he later wondered if he’s been better off taking that left turn at the base of Horeb. He heard a voice call to him, “Moses, MOSESSSSS!” (Well that’s how it sounded when Charles Heston was Moses, OK!) His left brain, the logical side, said in way that nasally way most tax accountants use when they tell you, “you cannot possibly deduct dental floss as a business expense!”, his left brain told Moses , “Shut up Moses! Don’t say anything, maybe the voice will think you didn’t hear it!“, but his Right Brain, not even being aware there are rules or social graces, said, “Here I am!!“. The left brain gave the right brain a glare that could melt tungsten. Left brain went off sulking as Moses took off his Mountain Climber Flip Flops.

We know what happened here, that God told Moses He had not forgotten His people, and that He was their God. That He had heard their cries for help, and that their Egyptian task masters were being cruel, and it was time for all that to come to an end. Then He told Moses this:

“Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.” Exodus 3:10 ESV

Except for the sounds of a flame not consuming the bush, the only other sound that could be heard was the sound of sheep, nervously chewing the grass, and anticipating their first opportunity to be irritated at Moses, again. This will become a common theme in Moses life over the next 40 years. We can only hope he is taking good notes.

After looking around to make sure he wasn’t being mistaken for another Moses that might hopefully be standing right behind him, and seeing that he was, in fact, the only human being careless enough to go tromping around the Holy Mountain, Moses stood there with his mouth open, as if his jaw muscles had grown too tired to keep working, and were taking a coffee break.

He thought a myriad of thoughts that kept leaping and tripping all over each other. This was exacerbated by the fact that the Left Brain had not quite decided to let the whole Right Brain shouting out loud thing go just yet.

So, God waited.

He created Moses, just like he created the rest of us. He knew that Moses would need a moment to collect himself, and to get his thoughts, such as they were, under control.

Moses finally got a grip on himself enough to ask God some questions.

What ever it is that God asks you to do, He will be with you.

 But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” He (GOD) said, “But I will be with you, and this shall be the sign for you, that I have sent you: when you have brought the people out of Egypt, you shall serve God on this mountain.” Exodus 3:11- 12 ESV

See, Moses hadn’t been a prince of Egypt for some time, as Zippo was often reminding him. Besides that, there was that whole, “I murdered an Egyptian Guard” thing. Zippo was always telling him, “Moses, Moses, that was such a long time ago. You don’t even look like the Moses on the wanted posters. THAT Moses was young and handsome! YOU look like…well, lets just say that you have a lot of inner beauty, OK? ”

Once Moses got past all the excuses he could think of to NOT be deliverer of Israel, Friend of God, Law Giver, and Holy Land tour guide, he realized all he had to do now was convince Zippo that: He had a nice chat with the Living God on a mountain, and God wants him to go back to Egypt to free the Hebrew slaved and lead them to Caanan so they can take the land back from the remnants of the fallen ones, and call it Israel.  All I will say of that is that the ensuing conversation is where Zippo earned her reputation for being fiery. No one dared cross her after that.

God will empower you to do that task.

Moses said to God, “Ok, so let’s say that I actually get past the guards at the gate, then get past the security check point at the palace, and get past the palace guards that guard the throne room of Pharaoh, let’s say all that actually happens. I just go up to Pharoah and say “Let My People Go!” and he’s gonna go “OK, Sure!”??

I am going to look all jumped up and crazy. How is anyone going to believe a thing I say?

The LORD said to him, “What is that in your hand?” (Moses) said, “A staff.” And (the LORD) said, “Throw it on the ground.” So (Moses) threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent, and Moses ran from it. But the LORD said to Moses, “Put out your hand and catch it by the tail”—so he put out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand—” Exo 4:2 – 4 ESV

Moses was dumbfounded. THAT was some very cool stuff the Lord had in mind. Then Moses asked “Will this trick work on Zippo??”

God will never tell you to do something except that he will be there to see it through.

God let Moses practice that “stick to snake” miracle out a few times, just to make sure he got the timing down, and that Moses didn’t grab the wrong end of the snake. While he was warming up to this idea, he asked God, “So, I am going all by myself to confront an entire nation in order to free the Hebrew slaves?” God reminded him that, no, Aaron will go along to serve as Moses’s mouthpiece, but what’s more important is that GOD will be there all the time. He told Moses:

“So I will stretch out my hand and strike Egypt with all the wonders that I will do in it; after that he will let you go.” Exodus 3:20

Don’t be afraid to do what God has called you to do.

“Let me get this straight,” said Moses as he practiced picking up the snake again. He got it backwards the try before and threw the snake down instead of throwing the stick down. That almost turned out wrong.

“After you do all these to miracles in Egypt, the Hebrews will let me lead them out of the land of Egypt and just follow me out the gates?”

At the risk of being overly redundant, God said: “And they will listen to your voice, and you and the elders of Israel shall go to the king of Egypt and say to him, ‘The LORD, the God of the Hebrews, has met with us; and now, please let us go a three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God.’ But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless compelled by a mighty hand. So I will stretch out my hand and strike Egypt with all the wonders that I will do in it; after that he will let you go. “ Exodus 3:18 -20 ESV

The Blessings don’t begin until you have walked in your purpose from God.

By this time, Moses was beginning to buy in to this whole, “Deliverer of Israel from Egypt” thing. He told God he will do it, had the afore mentioned “discussion” with Zipporah, and put his sandals back on. God told Moses he had made the right choice and assured Moses:

“And I will give this people favor in the sight of the Egyptians; and when you go, you shall not go empty, but each woman shall ask of her neighbor, and any woman who lives in her house, for silver and gold jewelry, and for clothing. You shall put them on your sons and on your daughters. So you shall plunder the Egyptians.” Exodus 3:21-22 ESV

OK, So I am not Moses:

But I am a child of God.

I was created for a purpose.

Now that I have returned to God, God will show me that purpose.

I may not be asked to do the mighty acts of Moses. But I know that the acts I will do will be because God will be there to work through me. He will lead the way for me. He will be ever present through the good stuff and the bad times. He will empower me to do the things he has asked me to do. The degree of the power I see God work will be in proportion to the degree I have faith in He who sent me.

This is the same for you.

No matter how crazy it sounds, do whatever God asks you to do. You will be blessed.