“I AM the God of your forefathers-the God of Abraham, of Issac, and of Jacob. So Moses began to tremble and did not dare to look.” (Acts 7:32)
Moses was SO sure of his purpose. He thought his people would understand too.
Acts 7: 25 says, “He (Moses) assumed his brothers would understand that God would give them deliverance through him, but they did not understand.”
Things did not go as Moses had assumed or hoped.
He was rejected by the people he was sure he was called to lead. He spent 40 years in a desert as a shepherd.
Imagine being raised and educated to live like a prince but being forced to pursue a humble shepherd’s role!!
What a waste of life, you think!
But wait: God appears to Moses after 40 years- years He took in His Divine calendar to break Moses’ pride, confidence, everything in his flesh that made him rely on himself than on God.
Moses was “ready” for his God breathed time at the end of this period of dying to self.
Numbers 12:3 records, “Moses was a very humble man, more so than any man on the face of the earth.”
When God approached Moses at the burning bush, Moses was unsure of himself (a clear sign that the breaking process of self was complete!). He says in Exodus 3:11:
But Moses asked God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?”
This very Moses, who during his time in the palace knew that God had called him to lead his people!! In 40 years time, Moses perhaps thought he had misunderstood his purpose or lost his opportunity to fulfill God’s call.
40 years is a long enough time for Moses to begin accepting his shepherd’s life. Yet the desire to fulfill God’s call had not died within him. God breathed a new life upon Moses’ purpose after 40 years. He gave Moses a mission that was far above what Moses could have ever conceived in his mind for himself! This new mission required Moses to partner with God. Moses could have never pulled off the assignment without God’s Mighty Hand at work through the many miracles.
Oh I don’t know what season of wilderness you are in- this is your place of training. Your place of breaking. Until all people can see is Christ in you!! Just as a seed needs to dry up and shed its outer skin so a NEW life (a plant) can emerge, a complete dying to flesh and the things of the flesh are required for God to fulfill His purpose in and through you.
I want to encourage you today that if you find yourself in a “wilderness”, you are in a GREAT place! When you have completely “died” to your self, you are READY for Him to take over!
When Moses was ready, God met with him in his place of wilderness. In that ordinary place. In that place where hopes and dreams had dried up. Moses woke up one ordinary morning like he did every day in his 40 years in the desert. Moses went about tending his father in-law’s sheep like he had done day-in and day-out for 40 years. Yet that day was to be different. It was a “suddenly moment” that changed his ordinary to extraordinary. Moses remained faithful in the little- his duties as a shepherd. On one ordinary day, God was about to surprise Moses with more!
God announces to Moses in something that gave me goosebumps: (Acts 7:32, Exodus 3:5)
I AM THE GOD of your forefathers…
God was in essence saying that He is a PROMISE KEEPING God!!
No events happening in your life, however useless and valueless they may seem, have the final word on your destiny!! GOD has!!!
We read in Acts 7:33-35: “I have certainly seen the oppression of MY people (not Moses’ people but God’s!!)..I have heard their groaning…And NOW COME (after dying to self, your fleshy agenda of sorting this out in your own strength!), I WILL SEND YOU…THIS MOSES, whom THEY REJECTED..this one GOD SENT.”
I don’t know if you are discouraged looking at the way things are going around you and wondering if the purpose God has for you will ever take place.
Rest assured, He is a covenant keeping God! He keeps His promises!
Moses NEEDED the training in the desert. How was he supposed to lead the nation of Israel through the wilderness for 40 years when he had not learn to be there himself?
The wilderness taught him NEW SKILLS such as endurance and perseverance.
Moses’ work as a shepherd taught him SO much that he would not have learned in the palace. I quote from a website I read on the hard life of a shepherd *:
“You’ll need the patience of a saint, too, because sheep test you to the limit, with a million innovative ways to escape, ail or die. For all these reasons this probably isn’t a job for someone unfamiliar with the mountain, its sheep, and its people.”
Here is the BEST part *:
“The apprenticeship period for a shepherd is as about 40 years. You are just a “boy” or a “lass” until you are about 60: it takes that long to really know a mountain, the vagaries of its weather and grazing, to know the different sheep, marks, shepherds, bloodlines, and to earn the respect of other shepherds.”
As you can see from a modern shepherd’s point of view, the 40 years that Moses spent in the wilderness were NOT wasted!!! God knew this was needed for Moses to carry out the great assignment God had for him!
Moses had the right combination of palace and wilderness experience for the new assignment.
Your boring assignments are needed. They are part of the package! Embrace them. Don’t despise the small things.
Work on every little, insignificant thing God places into your hands as though you will work for the Lord. God sees the big picture. Your part is only to obey and walk the path He shows you to in humility, willingness and obedience. It is the Lord who rewards!
Know that God is more bothered about you fulfilling your purpose on earth than you are.
Allow the breaking process. Allow this boring, shepherd life in the desert.
This seemingly wasted season is not wasted like you think. No season in your life is wasted! God redeems everything.
Be at peace.