Please Send Someone Else

Please Send Someone Else
Pastor Stephen "Red" Shumate
February 11th, 2018
Photo by yousef alfuhigi on Unsplash

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Please Send Someone Else
Genesis 48-Exodus 7

Our reading this week is about the life of Moses, and today, we are going to focus in on the call of Moses.  And specifically, we are going to look at the interaction he has with God at the burning bush (Exodus 3:1 – 4:13). 

Over the last two weeks part of what we have been talking about is, our reluctance to answer God’s call.  Two weeks ago, our excuse was because of our Mess… In other words, we sometimes thing because of MY sin God can’t use me.  And so, we don’t respond to His call on our lives.  But, as we have learned, God can and will still use us.  So, we cannot use this as an excuse.

Then last week, our excuse was because of the mess of other people in our lives…Our land of affliction.  And because life throws so much junk at us, we sometimes think, there is too much going on for God to work through my life…or we just plain give up because we feel we will never get ahead… or we since we don’t see a path to complete God’s call, we don’t answer his call… But as we learned last week.  If we are faithful, then God will make us fruitful in the land of our affliction.  He will justify our affliction.  So, we cannot use this as an excuse.

Okay, so far, we have God can’t use me because of My Mess, and God can’t use me because of Other’s people mess, messing up my life. And this week, the excuse Moses used and the excuse we will talk about today is God can’t use me because of our lack of ability.

We think we can’t because we can’t…
Sometimes we think we can’t answer God’s call because we think we can’t do what he is asking us to do.  And In Exodus 4:10  we learn that Moses was “slow of speech and tongue.” Some scholars think this means he had stutter or some sort of speech impediment.  Regardless, God’s call for him would require him to talk to a lot of people and this would have presented a huge hurdle for Moses.

First of all, he would have to go and talk to pharaoh and convince him to let his people go.  But would Pharaoh listen to a man with a speech impediment? Then he had to lead an entire nation which meant that he would have to talk to church leaders, and address a nation?  Can a man with a speech impediment do all of that?

And sometimes, when God gives us a call, there may be many reasons we think we can’t do what he is calling us to do.  Maybe we think, we don’t have the money, education, or even contacts to make what God is calling us to do happen. 

4 and a half years ago, when God called me to be pastor at Covenant Baptist Church, do you know the thoughts that ran through my mind?  I can’t be a pastor, I’ve never gone to seminary.  I can’t be a pastor, I don’t have experience in counseling.  I can’t be a pastor because that means I’ll make less money and we might not have enough.

But the question is…  But who are we to say we can’t… if God says we CAN?

But who are we to say we can’t… if God says we CAN?
You see, it is not up to us to figure out how to make the impossible happen.  We leave that to God.  All we have to do is say yes.  God CAN do the impossible.  God can overcome all of our silly little hurdles (they are huge to us, but they are small to Him).  Look at what God says to Moses when Moses said, God I don’t talk good, send someone else…

Exodus 4:11-12 - The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord? 12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”

In other words what God is saying is,  I made you… I can take care of that hurdle…have faith in me.

When I said “Yes” to God and became a pastor…He took care of all my hurdles:
-God took care of my hurdle of not going to seminary, because it is God who know what to say each week.
-God took care of my hurdle that I didn’t have counseling experience, Because He teaches me what to say and His Spirit guides me through counseling.
-Go took care of my hurdle of finances because He provided me with a second job where I have boss, who is a Christian, and who is a preacher’s kid, and who is very understanding of my role here at church.

And you know what?  God laid down all of these foundations before I even had a clue He was going to call me.  I spent 10 years on the road, listening to Beth Moore teach the Bible… Do you think God might have been preparing me? I’ve worked with my boss (the Godly preacher’s kid), since about 6 months after I moved to Tennessee in ’98.  Do you think he had plans for this moment when He gave me that job? Our sound guy and treasurer, was the one who gave me enough work to move out to Tennessee in the first place.  Do you think it was any coincidence that he is also the one who got me connected here at Covenant Baptist Church…  That was 20 years ago,  I think God had a plan.

The thing is…
My God, does the Impossible, before I even know what’s going on.  So, who are we to say we can’t when God says we can?

Does our “Can’t” come from Faith, Fear or Desire?
The question is… Does our “can’t” come from a lack of faith, fear or desire?

In our story today, we see Moses fishing for excuses… right from the start… God says, I want you to go to the Israelites and tell them what I said.  Moses first response was, “Who am I to do all this?” (i.e. I’m a nobody, who am I to be put in such a position?).  But God responded, don’t worry, I’ll be with you.

Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” Exodus 3:13

And God said, tell them, I AM sent you.

Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?” Exodus 4:1

So, God gave him the miracles to prove it was God sending him.

Moses said to the Lord, “Pardon your servant, Lord. I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.” Exodus 4:10

And we know how God shut down that excuse….

So, now, Moses is out of excuses… He has nothing left to say to try to get him out God’s call on his life…

So then…
But Moses said, “Pardon your servant, Lord. Please send someone else.” Exodus 4:13

The question is, at the end of the day, when all of our excuses have been shut down…do we say, Lord please send someone else? I think sometimes we go through every excuse in the book, because we don’t want to say yes to his call…  But here is the question we really want to answer why?

Why do we give Him these excuses?

Do we give him all these excuses because we truly think we can’t do what he has called us to do… is it a lack of faith?

Do we give him these excuses because we are truly afraid to do what he has called us to do? Is it out of fear?

Or do we do we give him excuses because we just don’t want to?  Is it a lack of desire?

The thing is, to us, these are real issues and real hurdles, so now the question becomes, What do we do? What do we do if we think we can’t, if we are afraid, or if we just can’t bring ourselves to want to do what God has called us to do?

If we give him excuses because of a lack of faith (we truly think we can’t), then we must lean on Philippians 4:13, that says “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” as we step out on faith, one foot at a time.

If it is fear, then we need to lean on Psalm 23:4 that says “Yay, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil…” as we push on and face that fear.

If we give him these excuses because of a lack of desire,  then we must lean on John 14:15 that says If you love me, you will keep my commands. as we get past our wants and desires and learn to adopt Christs…

No, this isn’t going to be easy… but it is possible, through Christ who strengthens me. 

When God calls you, will your response be…
“Lord please send someone else…” 
Or will you say… 
“Lord, Please send me!”?

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