In Numbers, God opens the mouth of a donkey to rebuke Balaam (Num. 22:28). In the book of Jonah, he provided a worm to take the shaded vine away from Jonah to allow Jonah’s heart to be changed towards the people of Tarshish (Jonah 4:7). He said in Luke, to a response to the Pharisees wanting Jesus to subdue a worshiping crowd, that “[even] if they keep quiet, the rocks would cry out” (Luke 19:40).
Now let us move on from worms and rocks to God’s choice of people. People in the bible, often memorialized years later for their valor and courage were often, quite simply, wracked with flaws. Many were insecure, impatient, jealous, depressed, ashamed, cheaters, liars, doubters, guilty, full of lust, full of envy, and the list goes on.
What we remember about them, is what Paul Harvey would define as “the rest of the story.” Despite their numerous flaws, God used them in spite of themselves. God’s purpose was not to brand heroes like fictional fairy tales. He used the ordinary to show extraordinary! He used an “every day Joe” so to speak, to show the relatable qualities each of us possess throughout mankind. We can simply identify! We say, “If God can use her, He can also use me.”
The Lord used (and uses) ordinary people with sometimes below average talents and qualities to work through because HE wants the glory! In His infinite wisdom, His ways of choosing a qualified applicant is far different than the way the world chooses. “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong” (I Cor. 1:27).
Moses, in Exodus 4, when called to lead his people out of Egypt, out of slavery and bondage, had a gut-wrenching conversation with the Lord before he ever stepped foot on Mt. Sinai that showed more of what he was NOT capable of instead of highlighting his strengths. I think Moses needed to brush up on his interviewing skills! His resume included “I’m slow of speech” (v. 10b), and “they won’t believe me” (v.1). However, despite his hesitancy, and his pleas of unworthiness, he responded and God used him. He led the Israelites out of captivity from Egypt. Through Moses journey with the Israelites in the wilderness, we see so much about the character of God when we focus less on the character of Moses. We see God’s compassion because He gave them food and drink (Ex 16). He rained down manna from heaven (Ex 10:4). We get the Ten Commandments that show God’s character of being just and how He gives us a guide for upright living. We see God’s mercy by not annihilating this motley crew in one single sweep! We are able to connect Moses leading the Hebrews out of captivity with the future Messiah leading His own motley crew (including you and me) to the Promised Land. Only now, the Promised Land filled with milk and honey, does not have an entry point defined by the law, but through the blood of Jesus shed on Calvary….AMAZING GRACE!
You see, we are vessels. We are conduits to deliver messages, lead battles, to speak in His Name. We are channels to bring Glory to the Lord and to reveal His character here on Earth. If we are not on board, we are missing not only a blessing of our own (whether here on earth or as our heavenly reward), but we are missing an opportunity for the Lord to get the glory through our obedience. It’s ALL about HIM!
So how can the character of God be manifested in us? What is the Lord calling you to do? What is it that thing that He has planted deep inside you that only He and you know about? You know….that “thing” that keeps gnawing at you to start. Are you hearing “write”, “move”, “act”, “respond”, “build it in my name”? If you feel ill equipped and convinced that God has the wrong man for the job, just remember; God commissioned a worm and he made a donkey talk. Come out from behind the shadows of inadequacy, my friend. Do not proceed in order to be praised for your accomplishments and adored for your bravery. Jesus, the only One worthy of true praise, wants to be glorified through you!