Friday, May 18, 2012
Thankful in Times of Opposition – Part 1 of 4
Fear crippled them and prevented them from possessing the land by faith. Fear also kept them from experiencing God’s abundant love. Fear is the opposite of love. The two cannot coexist. Fear operates through unbelief, and love operates through faith.
It’s understandable that the people didn’t respect Moses much. They hardly knew him as a leader, and what they knew of his past hurt his reputation.
Imagine yourself living a slave’s life and one day finding out that one of your own people had been adopted by the Pharaoh’s daughter and raised as a prince. For the first forty years of his life Moses was sheltered while his fellow Hebrews suffered under the bonds of slavery. If Moses’ luxurious life didn’t make you jealous, then what happened next might make you think he was unworthy of respect.
His whole life took a dramatic turn when, in a moment of self-appointed heroism, he killed an Egyptian for beating a Hebrew. Then, when his cover was blown, he went on the run. For the next forty years, he lived as a fugitive and worked as a shepherd. From the pleasures of palace living to the harsh realities of desert dwelling, Moses not only looked, but also felt, like a failure.
Just before Moses killed the Egyptian, he knew that he was meant to do something great for God. But after another Hebrew blew his cover, he realized his zeal had been misguided and fled the scene. This incident so crushed his pride that his dream and passion died with it.
When God got hold of him forty years later, he thought God had the wrong man. He not only didn’t jump at the offer to lead the Israelites to freedom, he even declined it. Maybe you have felt like Moses. Maybe you have stopped believing in yourself. However, no matter how bad your past might seem to you, God is in the business of giving second chances.