Remember the carefree days of your youth, particularly the summer months when your life was filled with mirth and play? You recall those days when your parent(s) interrupted your outdoor fun with the request of a household chore you needed to complete? As an obedient child, you had the best of intentions of fulfilling the request your parent(s) made, however, just as you were about to begin the task, a friend stopped by to ask you to come outside to play your favorite pastime activity: double dutch, baseball, softball, hide & seek . . . You reasoned within yourself, "I can play for a few minutes and return home before Mom or Dad." Nevertheless, you began having so much fun, you lost track of time, and before you knew it, three hours had passed. Suddenly you panicked and raced to the house. When you arrived, your mother met you at the front door.
"Where have you been?"
"Didn't I tell you to do . . .?"
You had a litany of excuses. Nonetheless, your excuses paled in comparison to the wrath of your mother. She stated unequivocally: "No excuses!"
We have all been guilty of making excuses during various stages in our lives. Perhaps your excuses ranged from not completing a household chore; to consuming that large slice of apple pie a la mode or cheesecake; or failing to begin an exercise regime; or not fulfilling the plan God has purposed for your life.
Moses, the prophet of God, who was given the charge of leading the people of Israel out of Egypt to the Promised Land was replete with excuses to God when he was summoned to fulfill his purpose.
So now, go. I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring
my people the Israelites out of Egypt.
(Exodus 3:10 NIV)
Immediately Moses vocalized the reasons he was not equipped for the task:
What if they do not believe me or listen to
me and say, "The Lord did not appear to you'?
(Exodus 4:1 NIV)
Pardon your servant, Lord, I have never
been eloquent, neither in the past not since you have
spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue.'
(Exodus 4:10 NIV)
It is evident that God did not respond favorably with Moses' appeals:
Then the Lord's anger burned against Moses . . .
(Exodus 4:14 NIV)
Although Moses was reverent, humble, and acquainted with the voice of God, he appears to not have had confidence in the God who declared, I AM THAT I AM (Exodus 3:14a, KJV) Rather he focused on his insufficiencies, human frailties, his lack of pedigree, influence, leadership skills . . than on the ability of the Almighty God.
Gideon is another example of one who received a call to destiny, but was faithless in his God who called him.
The Lord turned to him and said, Go in the strength
you have and save Israel out of Midian's hand. Am I not
Pardon me, my Lord, Gideon replied,
but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in
Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.
The Lord answered, I will be with you, and you will strike
down all the Midianites, leaving none alive.
Gideon replied, If now I have found favor in your eyes,
give me a sign that it is really you talking to me.
(Judges 6:14-17 NIV)
During Jesus' earthly ministry, there was a man who had been sick nearly four decades, waiting to be healed. Unlike Moses and Gideon, who used their physical proclivities, lack of station, and low self-esteem as excuses for not answering the call of God, this nameless invalid at the Pool of Bethesda, attempted to establish his case with Jesus by blaming people for his plight.
Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years.
When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in
that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?”
The sick man answered Him, Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when
the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.
Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk. And immediately the
man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. (Jn. 5:5-9 KJVA)
Everyone born has been ordained with a purpose regardless of the circumstances of your origin, level of intellectual prowess, or socio-economic status. You have been given a purpose to fulfill: arts and entertainment, religion, government, education, family, business, medicine.
Are you fulfilling the purpose of God? If not, what is your excuse? Who are you blaming?
Moses and Gideon became heroes in the Hall of Faith for their extraordinary leadership as a prophet and a judge in the lives of the children of Israel. The scripture does not reveal the future the impotent man at the pool of Bethesda experienced after he was healed. However, one can imagine he became a disciple of Jesus, spreading the Gospel. However, before the transformations of courage, obedience, and healing occurred in the lives of Moses, Gideon, and the impotent, each man believed he had a legitimate, justifiable excuse for not believing and executing the plan of God for their lives. However, Father God or Jesus did not sympathize, pity, or enable them. As a result, Moses, Gideon and the man received the challenge extended to them. What about you?