I've been deep in thought over the last while. The Word of God continues to challenge me and I hope it does the same for you. My thoughts have been around a number of tough issues and I'm really taking strain as I try to digest it all. For starters, the writer of Hebrews has challenged me in the area of my spiritual maturity. In Chapter 5, the question is whether or not we are still stuck suckling on the milk of the truth about Jesus. Verse 13 says: "Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil". Where am I in all of this? Do I keep going around and around with my baby bottle in my mouth, or is my chin carrying traces of the pepper sauce that smothered my medium-rare filet mignon? Does my behaviour suggest I know what obedience to God is all about and am therefore living it daily? If I were just starting on my road with Christ, this would be a proper place to start, but I'm more than a decade down the narrow path, and I'm expecting a lot of myself. I think God expects a lot from all of us. His expectations will always seem high, because God is all about us reaching to beyond the boundaries we set up for ourselves. Moses was just tending sheep when he spotted the burning bush. He was in the desert, totally out of the action, and the next thing he was standing before one of the greatest rulers of his time, telling him to let go of the slaves that were building monuments to satisfy his very vanity. God was expecting a lot, putting him before Pharaoh. We know the history: The seemingly impossible not only became possible, it was actually achieved. Heaven came to earth and history was forever changed.
I need a reminder every now and again, particularly when times are tough. Those are the moments I get a bit spiritually childish. When the tyre really hits the tarmac, I've found myself low on faith and high on suspicion of God's true motives. That's milky madness right there. How can I teach if I'm not going to believe what I'm saying? How embarrassing. I could just as well be sucking on a pacifier in broad daylight. No Brad, c'mon!
A teach affects eternity, he can never tell where his influences stops.
The Moses example seems a big one to use in this context. The Exodus story is hardly a fair comparison to what you and I might be challenged to do, but in principle, it's really the same: Take God on His word, trust that He'll keep His promises, suck it up and do what seems impossible and then see God move. That seems to me what true obedience to God is all about. I can forever just live in the safe zone and go through the motions, but where's the testimony of true faith in that? That's the right place to start, but it's not where we need to end. Moses might have been content to herd sheep, but God had other plans. If God calls you, you need to answer, or face the chance of missing out. Let's avail ourselves to the opportunity to show our Father our true obedience, to move forward in our relationship with Him and sink our teeth into something spiritually meaty. Based on verse 12 then, we need to be showing the kind of faith that brings the most amazing testimonies, because they become the springboard that others could use to be shot to even greater spiritual heights. Isn't that what true teaching is all about? I immediately think of Moses and Joshua. Henry Brooks Adams said: 'A teacher affects eternity, he can never tell where his influence stops.' Let us be liberated by true obedience to a God who has never dreamed small. If we are to face something seemingly impossible, who better to have by our side than God Almighty, right? So, are you ready? Hang on!