Friday, June 24, 2011

The Voice of Reason

I always thought Moses was a very sensible man. There’s a story in Exodus 3 where God appears to Moses in the wilderness and tells him to go to Pharaoh and lead the Israelites to freedom. Moses has a bunch of questions for God, and points about himself to make:

  • What if the Israelites ask who sent me, what should I tell them?
  • What if they won’t believe me?
  • Who am I to go anyway - isn’t there someone better qualified you can send?
  • I’m not good with words – never have been, never will be.


I thought that these questions/ points were full of common sense. In fact, a lot of them sounded like points I’d made when I felt God was asking me to do certain things...things I wasn’t super comfortable doing... things I didn’t really want to do.

Perhaps “logic” is sometimes a disguise for fear.  What if “being reasonable” is simply an excuse for not stepping out of your comfort zone? After all, even when God had thoroughly replied to each of Moses’ questions, and reassured him of His power and presence, Moses still said essentially: “Send anyone else but me!”

 Besides, “reasonable” is not always the way God works.

Think of God commanding Gideon to go fight a huge Midianite army with only 300 men (Judges 7). (And the 300 men won.) Think of when God promised to part the Jordon River for the Israelites to go through on dry ground (Joshua 3, 4), but the priests had to get their feet wet first. Think of the fishermen Jesus sent out on the lake during the day, when it was harder to fool the fish (Luke 5). (They went anyway, and were rewarded with a catch so phenomenal that their boats were on the verge of sinking, and the seasoned fishermen were awestruck.)

In my own family’s experience, God has asked us to do some things that seemed pretty insensible...at least to my thinking!

When my parents were first impressed to consider mission work and joining Adventist Frontier Missions (http://www.afmonline.org/), my mum had been in a wheelchair for the past two years, unable to stand for more than a few seconds and chronically tired. She had ME. Because of her condition, we hadn’t even been able to move an hour or two North to my dad’s new church district. Obviously, world travelling and mission work was out of the question, totally unreasonable, right? (And much like Moses, I had a whole list of questions, and reasons why this was not a very good idea for me personally.)

But my parents didn’t let human logic, the fact of my mother’s long illness, get in the way of what they felt God was clearly asking them to do. They persisted in the path that was being progressively marked out, and prayed that God would show them that this was the right thing by healing Mum. And she was healed! From that day to this there have been no more problems with her ME.

If you know that God is asking you to do something, to get out of your comfort zone, but “the voice of reason” is putting up a fight... listen to God's voice instead. If God is leading you, it doesn’t matter what it looks like from a human perspective, whether it’s “reasonable” or not. God knows what you’re capable of when you attach yourself to Him. Do it anyway, and watch how He opens up the way and does some amazing things because you said “Yes”! 

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