“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.’ So I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9
We can all most certainly think of a time where we’ve asked God, “Why me?” While planning for my Middle School group (called STS for “Search the Scriptures – See the Savior”) I was struck by the connection between Paul’s words to the Corinthians and the story of Moses. I believe there is much we can learn from Moses. Upon seeing the Burning Bush, Moses approached the strange sight. It was then that God called to him. I couldn’t help but think how we should do the same – stay alert and aware of God’s presence so that we are listening when He calls to us. Then, it was in the exchange between Moses and God that made Moses’ humanity and frailty come to light. We referred to these as Moses’s five excuses.
MOSES: But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and bring the Israelites out of Egypt” (Ex: 3:11)
GOD: He said, “I will be with you.”
MOSES: But Moses said to God, “If I come to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?’” (Ex: 3:13)
GOD: God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” He said further, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
MOSES: Then Moses answered, “But suppose they do not believe me or listen to me, but say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you.’” (Ex. 4:1)
GOD: The Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” (God then shows Moses three miracles.)
MOSES: But Moses said to the Lord, “Oh my Lord, I have never been eloquent”
GOD: “Who gives speech to mortals? Who makes them mute or deaf, seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you are to speak.” (Ex. 4:10-12)
MOSES: “But he said, ‘Oh my Lord, please send someone else.’” (Ex. 4:13)
GOD: “Then the anger of the Lord was kindled against Moses and he said, ‘What of your brother Aaron the Levite? I know that he can speak fluently… You shall speak to him and put the words in his mouth….’”
I think each of his excuses is something we have found ourselves saying at some time or another, and we would be wise to meditate on God’s responses to Moses. We should find strength and encouragement in witnessing Moses overcome his human weakness. Even after everything God said, Moses still pleads, “Oh my Lord, please send someone else.” God, however, does not call the equipped. He equips the called. (That is a nice little reminder courtesy of Paul Abbe.) And what greater example do we have than that of Moses. We witness his struggle, and then we see how the Lord is with him throughout his mission.
This message is reiterated in the words of Matt Maher in his song “Your Grace is Enough.”
“Great is Your faithfulness, oh God
You wrestle with the sinner’s restless heart
You lead us by still waters and to mercy
And nothing can keep us apart.
So remember Your people. Remember Your children. Remember Your promise, oh God.
Your grace is enough. Your grace is enough. Your grace is enough for me.
Great is Your love and justice, God of Jacob
You use the weak to lead the strong
You lead us in the song of Your salvation
And all Your people sing along….”