Thursday, February 10, 2011

Aligning with God

Moses and the Burning Bush, illustration from ...

It seems that the among the most difficult tasks is to align yourself with God.  His will for your will.  Sometimes there is a specific direction that God is calling you to go.  At other times there is some general principles that He is attempting to bring to bear in your walk with him.  In either case being outside of His will keeps you from being able to engage effectively in a ministry of intercession. 

"I have come down to rescue them from the power of the Egyptians and to bring them from that land to a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey-the territory of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites. The Israelites' cry for help has come to Me, and I have also seen the way the Egyptians are oppressing them. Therefore, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh so that you may lead My people, the Israelites, out of Egypt." But Moses asked God, "Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?"
Exodus 3:8-11 (HCSB)

Moses still did not quite get it.  Not to point fingers at him, because honestly there are many times I don't quite get it.  Notice that first part of the quite "I (God) have come down to rescue..."  Then notice Moses' response, "Who am I that I should go..."  Moses' doubt was getting in the way.  He has covered it in false humility, but in fact it is a statement of doubt.  I say false humility because God was not asking Moses to do something.  God was asking Moses to join in something that He was already doing.  Moses' doubt then was not self-doubt, no it was doubt of God thinly veiled in self-doubt (false humility). 

I have been there!  God is making it clear to me there is some action that He wants me to be involved in and I say "I am not good enough."  At those times I believe I am doing God a favor by disqualifying myself, but in reality I am saying, "God I do not trust your judgment in choosing me."  Stated that way this doubt must be offensive to God.  Praise God He is longsuffering with our weaknesses.

He answered, "I will certainly be with you, and this will be the sign to you that I have sent you: when you bring the people out of Egypt, you will all worship God at this mountain."
Exodus 3:12 (HCSB)

After Moses' "Who am I" question I imagine God thinking, "No Moses not you alone."  He tells Moses that He will be with Moses.  He also says that proof will be in the success of the task that He was inviting Moses to be a part of.  Here is where faith begins to replace doubt.  Moses was looking for something that he could reasonably expect a positive outcome.  Ironically talking to a burning bush was not a convincing sign.  But are we not that way also.  God has shown up in our lives in some amazing way and yet when He appoints something for us we are like we never knew His mighty hand working in our lives?  No proof would be given.  Moses was to take the assignment on faith.  The proof was a complete task.  Faith was believing God's Word!

Then Moses asked God, "If I go to the Israelites and say to them: The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they ask me, 'What is His name?' what should I tell them?" God replied to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you."
Exodus 3:13-14 (HCSB)

I used to think that this was Moses just looking for a way out.  As I have matured in my faith I now believe that this is a very legitimate question.  You see Moses realized that this task was greater than himself.  He realized that it was not by his own authority he was taking on this task.  It was God's authority that he was acting on.  That is why he asks His Name. 

Let me offer an analogy.  If I were to travel to Egypt right now and ask for an opportunity to meet with the president I can confidently say they would not give me access.  In fact there is a high likelihood I would get myself arrested given the current state of affairs.  However, if I were part of a envoy from President Obama to talk with the President of Egypt and asked for an opportunity to meet him then my odds just when up substantially.  Why?  Because if I go of my own authority ("Who are you, I do not know a BJ") it does not mean much.  But if I go in president Obama's authority (his name) then it has significant meaning. 

So Moses was asking not to get out of going, but to identify the authority by which was being sent.  This relates to the ministry of intercession very significantly. 

You did not choose Me, but I chose you. I appointed you that you should go out and produce fruit and that your fruit should remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He will give you.
John 15:16 (HCSB)
I assure you: Anything you ask the Father in My name, He will give you. Until now you have asked for nothing in My name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.
John 16:23-24 (HCSB)

Key point here.  Alignment with God's will precedes "Asking in His Name."  It was only by aligning himself with God's purposes, and walking in God's Authority that Moses was able to ask in His name and have it happen.  Don't miss this point.  This is not a cosmic get a free meal ticket.  It is a call to join God and experience His power in your life flowing into the lives of others as you engage in the ministry of intercession.

I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.
John 16:33 (HCSB)

One last point.  In the same context of "Asking in Jesus' name" we have this verse.  "You will have suffering in this world."  It may not seem like a blessing to live this way. For most Christians they would choose a life of spiritual mediocrity over having to deal with suffering.  But notice the blessing.  You will have peace and courage in the midst of suffering.  Why?  Because Jesus has "conquered the world!"  Note the fulfillment of this is accepted by faith.  By the way sideline Christianity does not keep you from experiencing suffering in this life.  It just makes you powerless to do anything about it.

Brothers and Sisters in Christ.  We have a higher calling.  We are like Moses to the world.  Ours is a calling to lead others out of spiritual bondage and slavery.  We must align with God, have faith in His Word, receive his calling and authority, and then move to intervene in the lives of others.  It is a high calling, but one that is certain to bring a flood of blessing to your soul. 

For those that do not have a relationship with Christ I am sure this post is most confusing.  I pray that the Holy Spirit would convict and convince you of your greatest need, "A relationship with Christ."  You may not feel that now, but in time His Spirit will show you and I pray that God give you the faith to believe. 

God Bless You

~BJ


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