Monday, October 18, 2010

What is in your hand could be your desinty!

I'm reading through Exodus now and came across the story of Moses. LOVE MOSES!  Why? Because he's so Human. He's weak, he's not an eloquent speaker, he has no self-confidence. Basically he feels inadequate. So, when God approaches him through the burning bush and tells him to go free the Israelites from Egypt, Moses of course tells God He's got the wrong guy!
God proceeds to patiently tell Moses that He doesn't have the wrong guy, that God has a plan and it's going to unfold exactly according to His will.
Then at the beginning of Exodus 4, Moses still questions God by saying "But suppose they will not believe me or listen to my voice?
Then God says. "What is in your hand?"
And Moses answered "A rod."  It was his shepherding rod. Just a normal stick he used to guide the sheep. Nothing special. 

So, I'm asking you today, what is in your hand? What are your God-given talents? Perhaps you have a beautiful singing voice or you can play an instrument. Maybe you can draw, paint, or sculpt? Maybe you have talent in math and analytical thinking. Perhaps you can write, fix things, maybe you have a gift of listening, caring, comforting. Maybe you're clinging to a problem, a heartache, a fear. The list goes on. Maybe you don't know if you have any talents at all. Maybe you're just an ordinary person who really doesn't think much of yourself.
I still ask you, What is in your hand?   Maybe its just you.

God then asked Moses to throw the stick down. Cast it at the foot of the throne of God. Basically God was asking for everything Moses had. 
What happened?  God turned the stick into a snake and Moses ran.  God performed a miracle. He changed the rod. But it certainly wasn't into something  Moses expected or even wanted. Has this ever happened to you? You finally turn everything over to God (whether it be your talents, time, problems, heartaches, your life itself), but then things get worse. The bouquet of flowers you expected turns out to be a snake!  

But then God does an interesting thing. He asks Moses to pick up the snake from the tail end. Anyone knows you NEVER pick up a snake from the tail end because then it will be able to bite you.  You see, God was testing Moses. Would Moses be obedient even when things hadn't been going well and even when being obedient would cause him great harm? Would he trust God?

Maybe like Moses, you've thrown down your all to God. But now all you're seeing is snake. You're frightened, you're discouraged and you're tempted to run the other way.  God is done transforming your problem, your talent and now He wants to give it back to you. But it frightens you. God is asking too much. But you need to pick it up. You need to be obedient. I promise, if you do, the snake will transform into a powerful rod of God.

I'm so glad Moses picked up his stick. You see, he went on to use that rod (through the power of God) to perform great miracles in Egypt and free the Israelites from 400 years of bondage.  Moses had a destiny. And all he had to give God was the staff of a shepherd. But he gave it to Him. And God did things with that rod that blew Moses's mind.

So, what is in your hand?


  1. Debbie Mitchell debsbunch5@jesusanswers.comOctober 18, 2010 at 10:55 AM

    Hey, MaryLu, great post! It makes a lot of sense. Before I started teaching Sunday School, I felt the calling, but I was afraid to "pick up the staff"... The same way God used Aaron to give Moses that extra confidence, He used a wonderful woman in my life to give me the confidence I needed. She was the current Sunday School teacher at my church. I was in my early twenties and she "saw" the desire I had to teach, but she also saw the fear. She asked me to be her helper in Sunday School. I began helping her each Sunday and before I knew it, I was teaching her class! That was about 26 years ago..I have moved a few times since, but God has given my a class to teach in each church I attended...I currently teach a PreK-K class and 1st-2nd class alternately...God really works through those who step out....those who 'let go and let God'.......God bless your day.

  2. Oh how I needed this post today! I'm preparing to launch 2 books and I was feeling just like Moses but didn't know it until I read your post. Who would have thought my rod/snake would be my books?

    thank you,
    Angie Breidenbach

  3. Yes, Debbie, that's exactly what I'm talking about! Great example! God gave you a talent for teaching, but you had to step out in faith and use that talent for His glory! So many people fail to do that.
    Very cool Angela. I know how you feel! It's so scary to put your babies out there even though you know God gave you a message to share with others. But yes, the gift of writing God gave us is our rod. (Sometimes it feels like a snake that bites us! LOL) Commit your books to God and toss them out there and see what He will do. And the best to you in your launches. :-)

  4. Wow. Great post and something to think about.

  5. Tues Oct 19th,
    Morning, MaryLu.
    Well, I was in another city yesterday ... so I have only been able to get back to this blog, today. I did read your message though before I left, and actually thought a lot about it, before writing this morning.
    "My rod" is not one that will win me any praise or favour, from mankind (just warning you) ..... Altogether, I have four sons. Only "one" of them, Jeff (29), has not moved on with his life in a positive manner. He is a type-1 diabetic, and, has many 'emotional/mental/behavioural'issues going on. Of his 29 years on this Earth, 27 of them have gone from -- bad to worse. (I had to put him out of our home at the age of 15 -- for the safety, protection and sanity -- of the rest of our family.) Throughout his life, I had taken him to SO many -- Doctors, agencies, specialists, caregivers ... anywhere, to try and get him the help he needed. But Jeff has always been "his own person" (even to his own detriment) ... and done his own thing ... never heeding to the voice of -- reason or logic.
    Going back to your message though ... I have to tell you, that I am absolutely petrified of snakes ... PETRIFIED !!! I wouldn't pick up a snake (or even be close to one) ... on purpose ! Many times, and I mean many ... Jeff AND his life, have been "like that snake" (so to speak) ... and I have not always wanted to go near him, or, be around him. It "seems" like I eventually, always come back into the 'picture of his life' ... to help clean up his messes, disasters, and problems. MaryLu, "if" Jeff is the "rod in my hand" ... I am just so tired, and truly ... I don't want to pick it up anymore, and 'fix things'. His life is so messed up, and, complicated. The stress and weight of it all, are just too much to bear. "Every parent" wants to see their child/children -- moving on with life, being successful, making a difference, and "hopefully" becoming what the Lord intended for them to be. With Jeff ... I fear I will never get to see that. Try though I may -- it is so difficult not to be completely discouraged, and, downtrodden !
    That's where I was yesterday ... in Hamilton, with Jeff ... as he is going through yet 'another' problem in his life. (Somehow, they always end up affecting me.)
    Now ... all of that being said ... I have been praying so much, asking God -- for His peace, His love and patience, His protection (for myself, and for Jeff too); and for Jeff to "come back to the God he once knew, from his childhood". I have been claiming various Bible verses ... and going forward, "in the strength of The LORD" ... truly, not mine !
    So .... if "Jeff" is the 'rod in my hand' (again, so to speak) ... let me pick up that rod ... and go forth ... ONLY with God's help !
    Thanks for allowing me to share the reality of "my rod" ...
    Take care, and, God Bless,
    In Him, Brenda Hurley

  6. what a great post.

  7. Thanks Amy and April!
    Brenda, I'm so sorry to hear about your son. Of course his problems affect you greatly. You're his mom. Believe me I understand more than you know. This is such a painful thing for a mom to endure. It sounds like you are doing all the right things. Loving him and praying God's promises over him. Is Jeff your rod? I don't think that's what God means by a rod. Your rod is your gifts and talents.. perhaps your ability to persevere and trust God through all this mess with your son. Perhaps your rod is just your faith that Jeff is in God's hands. Sounds to me like you've already picked up that rod and are running with it. Keep going and see what God will do with your faith and perseverance!

  8. Tues Oct 19th,
    Thanks, MaryLu.
    After I wrote what I did ... I wondered if I had it 'all wrong' ... basically seeing "the rod" as something - not good. (Wasn't looking at it as 'gifts and talents'.) No, I guess Jeff is NOT my rod. But just 'maybe' as you suggested ... my faith and perseverance are 'my rod'. No, that can't be right .... that sounds "too boastful" (as 'if' I have it all together .. which I DON'T) !
    Maybe ... it's just that I am the "only" family member .. who is willing to still visit him, and, help him out. I do love him, and, I do forgive him (usually ... on an "ongoing basis") .... "trying" to do what I 'think' Jesus would have me do.
    Thanks so much MaryLu ... for your encouraging words ... they were truly appreciated !!! Faith and perseverance .... yes !!!
    Take care, and, God Bless,
    In Him, Brenda Hurley

  9. Debbie Mitchell debsbunch5@jesusanswers.comOctober 19, 2010 at 5:16 PM

    @Brenda: I will be praying for you and your son. Please remember whenever you are dealing with your son, that God, too, has millions of children who do not heed his words. He is constantly trying to get through to them, showing them His love. Yet, they reject Him over and over again. At times, they repent and ask for forgiveness and promise to never do it again, yet down the road, there they are wallowing in the 'world' again. Sometimes, God decides to step aside and let his children make their own choices, to select their own paths. What happens next varies from one child to another, yet the Lord is right there watching every move. He will use others to help that child take the right path. (this could be you or it could be someone else in his life) Just be in prayer and open your heart to what the Lord wants you to do concerning your son. I will be praying that the Lord speaks to Jeff's heart and that He opens his eyes to what is going on in his life and how it effects those around him. Use all of the resources in your area concerning your son's condition. You would be amazed at how much help there is out there if you look hard enough. In God, Debbie Mitchell

  10. Wed Oct 20th,
    Thanks, MaryLu.
    And, thank-you Debbie M -- for what you shared, and, that you are willing to pray on Jeff's behalf, too. (He NEEDS "all" of the prayers he can get !!!) I "need" ... more people on 'my team' .. helping to pray for him !
    My prayer will be - that others will 'come along side' of Jeff in his life ... because, Jeff rarely listens to me. (He most certainly does NOT listen to the 'voice of reason', nor, does he 'heed wise counsel' !)
    Since Jeff's early childhood, I had done nothing but -- taken him to various -- Dr's, agencies, caregivers, Specialists, etc ... always "trying" to get him the help he needed. But once Jeff turned that 'magic age' of "16", (where he was free to make the choices), he just put his foot down, and said, "No !"
    Him hanging out with the 'wrong crowds', and choosing the 'wrong activities' to be involved with ... has led him further down 'the road of destruction'.
    When you said: ".... and how it effects those around him." You'll never know, and Jeff especially will NEVER know .. just how much his choices/problems/dilemnas have affected his brothers, and, me !
    My prayer will be - that someone else/or others -- will become involved in Jeff's life ... positive, Christian friends/influences ... as he has basically 'closed his eyes, deafened his ears, and shut off his heart'.
    Again, thank-you, Debbie ... I truly appreciate your kind and thoughtful words of encouragement, and, especially your prayers !
    Take care, and, God Bless,
    In Him, Brenda Hurley

  11. I never really thought about Moses that way-but it makes perfect sense. Like a "duh!" moment. I'm not really sure whats in my hands. I guess I'm still trying to figure it out. There's a lot of people who tell me whats in my hands, but I guess its harder for me to see for myself, you know? Great topic. One that especially made me think...

  12. Debbie, thanks for jumping in with your great advice for Brenda. :-) I encourage all of you to talk amongst yourselves. This blog isn't about me.. it's about you and God.
    Eszter, I never knew what God had placed in my hand until my 40's! Mainly because I never bothered to ask Him. So, ask Him and then trust He'll show you in His good time. :-)