walk in the word
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? Now therefore go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall speak” (Exodus 4:11–12, esv).
God’s plan for your life involves three main categories: (1) what He wants to do for you, (2) what He wants to do in you, and (3) what He wants to do through you.
For you? Everybody loves that. The more, the better. In you? Sure. We’re not against seeing a little improvement in our lives. But through you? That’s often the part we have the hardest time believing is possible. Few of us look at ourselves and see a lot of those “through me” kinds of gifts and abilities. We’re more prone to look at other people who appear to be born ready to be used by God in ways we think He could never use us.Your Creator has fashioned you in every respect to be 100% effective in the job He wants you to do. Click To Tweet
But that’s where you’d be wrong. And that’s where Moses went wrong. “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” (Exodus 4:10). Whether he had a stutter, a lisp, a cleft palate, or whatever made him so nervous and uneasy about his speaking skills, it was a huge deal to him. And as a result, he was much more comfortable just staying within his limitations.
The trouble with making this concession, however, is that God doesn’t buy it—the God who not only wants to do things for you and in you, but through you. It’s not that you and I don’t have weaknesses and deficiencies that are beyond our control. We each deal with certain conditions that we did nothing to bring on ourselves—but none of them is an excuse to keep you from heeding God’s call to work. Your Creator has fashioned you in every respect to be 100% effective in the job He wants you to do. So if God has decided He wants to work through a liability area—a lack of talent that you think makes you incapable of serving Him in that capacity—then He must be expecting you to cooperate with Him by putting forth your best effort anyway.
Malcolm Gladwell, in his book Outliers, coined what he calls the “10,000-Hour Rule.” He argues that above a necessary level of aptitude—in whatever the field or endeavor—the single greatest contributing factor to a person’s success is the amount of time he or she spends working on it. True mastery, he says, is only achieved after ten thousand hours of effort, even for those who already possess the innate, baseline skill for it.
That’s why God could say to a resistant Moses, “Who has made man’s mouth? Who makes him mute, or deaf, or seeing, or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?” The problem with Moses wasn’t that he couldn’t speak well. The problem was that speaking required his faith-filled effort if God was to work through him.
Learn that lesson today. The issue is not what you can or can’t do, based on your analysis of your personal abilities. The Word says, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might” (Ecclesiastes 9:10). “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” (Colossians 3:23). Your less-than-talented areas can only hold you back if you say you won’t try.
Lord God, I choose to thank You for exactly how You’ve made me. I thank You for my family of origin and for every experience You’ve allowed me to undergo in life. Though I’ve looked at these situations before and concluded that they’ve left me with deficits and incapacities, I surrender all my perceived limitations back to You today. Use them for Your glory. Use them to keep me humble. Use them to show what Your power can do with human weakness, I pray, in Jesus’ name, amen.
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