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  • Dr. Jackie Minor

Beware of Excuses

You want me to do what?


Has God ever placed something on your heart to do and your first response was “What?” Not “what” in a clarifying kind of way, but “What?” in an “Are you serious?” kind of way. Too often when God places a calling on our hearts, our first response is to see our own limitations. I’m reminded of Moses, the Moses who parted the Red Sea. He had a similar response when God first called him.


But Moses protested to God, “Who am I to appear before Pharaoh? Who am I to lead the people of Israel out of Egypt?” Exodus 3:11

or

But Moses protested again, “What if they won’t believe me or listen to me? What if they say, ‘The Lord never appeared to you’?” Exodus 4:1

or

But Moses pleaded with the Lord, “O Lord, I’m not very good with words. I never have been, and I’m not now, even though you have spoken to me. I get tongue-tied, and my words get tangled.Exodus 4:10


If you know the story, you know God did not remove the call from Moses’s life, but He did provide all Moses needed to lead the Isrealites out of bondage. We know from Moses’ experiences that following God’s call can yield uncertainty, confusion and rejection. Many scholars believe the series of plagues lasted around 4-5 months (although no one is certain). The trek to the Promised Land through the wilderness was long (40 years anyone?) and fraught with resistance. If you want an example of the patience of God, read Exodus.


As I navigate this new call on my life—a call to a ministry for Christian educators—Moses’s example gives me hope. I am in no way comparing myself to Moses. What I mean is I love how God shows us everything in his Word—the struggles, the missteps, the rebellion. I am hopeful because He is faithful…even when we aren’t.


What am I learning from Moses’ excuses?


Excuse #1: Who am I to…start this ministry?


Like Moses, I feel unworthy. Although God had long forgiven Moses, I wonder if Moses had forgiven himself? I often catch myself thinking of all the past mistakes I have made and letting those mistakes determine my worthiness. In Sheila Walsh’s new book, #It’s Okay Not to be Okay, she encourages us to take back our thought life by choosing to “walk past our past.” I know this intellectually, but like Moses, I must remember the only way to fulfill my calling is to be in constant communion (prayer) with God through His Word. I have to get his promise from my head to my heart.


It is as if God is saying:

You are right. You aren’t worthy, but I AM. I sent My Son

so you could live in victory, not defeat. Trust Me.


Excuse #2: What if they won’t believe me or listen to me?


There are so many great Christian speakers, Bible teachers, and writers on the scene these days. I’m sure they have always been out there, but the explosion of social media has made us more aware of their influence and activity. I am grateful for every one of them and amazed at all God is doing through them. As a result, I feel a bit like Moses—fearful no one will listen, no one will engage with the ministry, no one will read the blogs.


It is as if God is saying:

Don’t worry about who reads the blogs. Don’t worry what people think. Trust me.


Excuse #3: O Lord, I’m not very good with words.


Moses didn’t feel like he could be a spokesperson. Yet, God told him, “I will be with your mouth and tell you what to say.” Right now, I am writing blogs as one way to support and encourage educators. To be honest, I am not a writer. I’m sure some of you could tell. It doesn’t come easy, and it feels awkward. I’m not creative, and yet there is so much I feel God is placing on my heart to share.


It is as if God is saying:

Writing isn’t your strength, but I still want you to do it. Trust me.

I want to be like Moses. Although initially he was full of excuses, he got honest with God and learned to trust Him each step of the way. As a result, Moses experienced the mighty power of God as Israel became a nation. Just think of what Moses would have missed if he would have held onto his excuses instead of trusting God.


So what about you? What is God calling you to do? Who is God calling you to be? What are your excuses? Be honest with Him. Talk to Him. Seek guidance in His Word, and trust Him to be with you each step of the way. You don’t want to miss being a part of His plan.


Beware of excuses.





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