Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Prepared for the Mission - May 25, 2011

Good wet Wednesday! The rain is back once more as it has been off and on all through the night. Today, walking along in the rain with your favorite rain coat or jacket on, you come across a bush that is on fire. Your first reaction after "Aaagh! Call out the Fire Department!" is to look a little closer. The bush is burning along merrily, but is not being burned up, nor is the fire being quenched by the monsoon rains. A mighty voice that brooks no disobedience thunders, "Take off your LL Bean galoshes; you are standing on holy ground!" Uh oh... You get a mission to a far country called Zerd; a country you have never heard of, or even happened upon in conversation until now. Is Zerd a monarchy? A democracy? Do they have Internet access there? You seem to be remarkably unprepared to head up a new mission to this place.

The first man to come upon a burning bush didn't have it like that. Moses was very well prepared to go to Egypt on a mission from God. Moses was born during a time of persecution in Egypt when a pharaoh had become fearful of the growing Israelite population. As often happens when fear rules, the pharaoh had ordered murder as a means of population control. Moses was literally cast adrift by his family, but, lo, his little boat did come ashore at the place where Pharaoh's daughter did bathe. Her first reaction, after "Eek! Do throw me a towel my handmaiden!", was to grab little Moses and adopt him into the royal family. Little Moses then began his royal education as a prince of the land.

Why would this become important? Moses would many years later be sent directly to the pharaoh with a message, "Let my people go!" However, it wouldn't be so easy for you and me. Where is the royal court in Egypt? Does it move around at different times of the year as the rich and powerful tend to do? Moses knew these things; he had been uniquely prepared by God for his mission. Even after 40 years or so, Moses knew names at court, where in the land the royal court would be at the time of his arrival, and he would have known the quickest and shortest set of royal flunkies to visit to gain access to pharaoh. Royalty tends to have a lot of filters in place to keep folks like you and me from walking up and asking a lot of questions. And royalty certainly wouldn't want us to walk up to them and say, "God says: Let all of your free labor go home to the Promised Land!" Moses knew the rules, the nuances, the protocols, and yes, perhaps even the right palms to grease in order to get in to see the current pharaoh.

Our little mission to Zerd would be off to a rocky start, but Moses didn't have to seek out an Ancient Middle Eastern Travel office and ask a lot of dumb questions. Once God overruled the excuses that Moses put up, he was off to his homeland to bring the people out of slavery. You and me? Well, we are stuck at the Fantasyland Travel office listening to things like: "You want to go where? To do what? Are you crazy?" We didn't receive a royal education and upbringing in the royal court of Zerd you see, and we are simply and totally unprepared. Somewhere in your life, God did prepare you for a mission though.

Your mission may be right where you live now, on the Internet, in a far country, or even on a moon base, but you did receive a preparation for this mission. Your preparation might have been working and learning in your mother's kitchen to cook wonderful dishes. You might have been interested in technical or scientific things much more than most other children. In so many and wonderfully varied ways, God has prepared each of us to do exactly what he would have us to do as a mission. "But, I didn't come to believe until later in life?" you might ask. That didn't stop God from getting you ready!

Put on your galoshes and enjoy the day in Christ!


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