Monday, May 13, 2019

Pastor's Ponderings, May 13, 2019

What Do You Have In Your Hand?  

In the Bible, God sent Moses to deliver the Israelites, but Moses replied that people would not believe him.  God then asked him what was in his hand and to throw it to the ground as a sign. His staff became a living snake (Exodus 4:1-3). As a result, Moses had a change in his thinking about accomplishing God’s mission.

The Bible says that as a man thinks in his heart, that is what he is (Proverbs 23:7a).  If one feels they are defeated while they are at their starting line, it is pretty certain they will not win their race. We think we need something else when God tells us that the Greater One lives on the inside of us (1 John 4:4). Moreover, if God is for us, who can be against us (Romans 8:31)? 

Often people will look to something else outside of their reach to help them reach their life’s mission.  They reason that if only they had more money, more education, great contacts, more authority, or more hutzpah, they would feel they could really accomplish their assignment in life. If only they had something more than they have.

In the Bible, King David had five smooth stones and a slingshot to defeat a highly trained giant (1 Samuel 17:40).  Moses raised his rod and God parted the Red Sea. Abraham believed the promises of God and produced an heir in his old age. The prophet Elijah asked a widow to continue to pour her oil, which was enough to deliver her family from being sold into slavery (2 Kings 4:1, 2, 4, 7). We are commanded to speak the things that are not as though they were so (Romans 4:17).  Death and life are in our own tongue’s power.  

What do you have in your hand?  Let us take an inventory of our strengths, resources, dreams and visions and let us run the race that God has set before us. No, we do not need more money, more education, more great contacts, more authority, or more hutzpah.  Jesus has already given us everything that we need that pertains to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). Let us receive the strength, wisdom, faith, and knowledge that He has already given us because He lives in us. Moreover, let us continue to remind ourselves that everything that we need is already in our hands to accomplish whatever His mission is in our lives.

Exodus 4:1-3
New International Version (NIV)
Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?”
Then the Lord said to him, “What is that in your hand?” 
“A staff,” he replied.
The Lord said, “Throw it on the ground.”

Proverbs 23:7a
King James Version (KJV)
For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he:

1 John 4:4
New International Version (NIV)
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

Romans 8:31
New International Version (NIV)
31What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?

1 Samuel 17:40
New International Version (NIV)
40 Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine.

2 Kings 4:1, 2, 4, 7
New International Version (NIV)
The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.”
Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?”
“Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a small jar of olive oil.”
Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.”
She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.”

Romans 4:17
New International Version (NIV)
17 As it is written: “I have made you a father of many nations.” He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls into being things that were not.

2 Peter 1:3
New International Version (NIV)
His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.

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