For those of you who have seen The Prince of Egypt (the animated cinematic MASTERPIECE depicting the Biblical story of Moses), this story is familiar to you. But, if you want to read what really happened, you can check out the beginning of Exodus.
Moses was a Hebrew born into slavery. His mom, who had great faith, put him in a basket in the Nile River and Moses was then rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter. Moses was raised as an Egyptian prince until he discovered his true identity and ran away from Egypt. We catch up in Exodus 3-4 with Moses in the desert where he has been living as a shepherd with a new family of his own. One day, Moses followed a wandering sheep into the wilderness and came upon a burning bush where God chose to speak to him. In this moment, God placed a great task on Moses’ shoulders: “I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt (Exodus 3:10). This was no easy task that God assigned to Moses. God was asking Moses to confront his brother, the Pharaoh, the most powerful political figure in the region, to set thousands of slaves free, ending a several hundred-year tradition of enslaving the Israelites. Moses, understandably, throws every excuse at God that he can think of. “What if they don’t believe you sent me?” “What if they don’t listen to me?” “What if I’m scared?” “What if I don’t speak well in front of crowds?” Finally, he pleads with God, “Please, send someone else.”
What Moses doesn’t get is that it’s really not about him at all. The only way that Moses could do anything that he did was because of God’s strength and provision. Slowly, God is shifting Moses’ mind to see that only by God’s grace would he be able to accomplish this daunting mission. Moses needed to shift from fear to faith, from doubt to peace. The shift occurs in this conversation where God shows Moses that He has gone before him and that He will never abandon him. Moses can have faith that the Lord will provide all that he needs during this journey. It’s not about what Moses CAN’T do; it’s only about what God CAN do. Spoiler alert: Moses’ journey was not easy and he made many, many mistakes. But the Lord never, never, never let him down and was faithful and loving. He kept His promise and gave Moses everything he needed. Moses did lead all of the slaves out of Egypt, by God’s strength and guidance.
The shift in my life was quite similar to Moses. By the time you are reading this, I will have already graduated college. The final year of college is a scary time, full of uncertainty and fear and nerves about what lies ahead. Through my final months of school, God was slowly showing me that I am called to college ministry, which is similar to youth group for college kids. My job would be like a youth pastor, but on a college campus. I didn’t want to believe it at first. I kept telling God, “no way”. I want to do so many other things with my life. I want to work in sports marketing, I want to work in public relations and use the degree that I’ve worked so hard for. I can’t be in ministry. I don’t even know if I like college kids that much! What can I teach people? I don’t know anything! God must’ve been laughing (lovingly) at me that whole time, knowing how He will answer all of these questions.
When I was ready to listen to Him, He reassured gently that none of this is even about me. He has blessed me with gifts that He will use to further His kingdom, but He is going before me to make a way for me. He will give me the words I need to teach people and He will fill my heart with love for people that might be difficult to love. He has sent me on this mission to love on college kiddos, and so it is now my privilege to surrender my heart to the Lord and turn my fear into faith.