If you recall the history of the children of Israel, they ended up in Egypt because of a famine. They resided there for a number of years, and the Pharaoh of Egypt saw how the children of Israel were being blessed. They were increasing in population and that concerned him. So he oppressed the children of Israel and enslaved them for over 400 years. The children of Israel cried out for deliverance – for relief.
In Exodus chapter three, you find Moses attending to his father-in-law’s sheep. One day he saw something that caught his eye. It was a bush on top of the mountain that was on fire, but didn’t get consumed by the flames. Because he HAD to see what this was, he went to investigate it. When he got there, he met someone. That someone was the God of Heaven.
God introduced Himself to Moses. In Exodus 3:6, the Lord said to Moses, “I am the God of your father—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then, the Lord, said, “I have certainly seen the oppression of my people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. I am aware of their suffering.” So, God said to him in verse eight, “I have come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up from that land to a good and large land, to a land flowing with milk and honey, to the place of the Canaanites and the Hittites and the Amorites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites.”
You Want What?
So, you can imagine all of this sounds great to Moses! His people are about to be set free! But, then we get to verse 10, and God says to Moses, “Come now, therefore, and I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring My people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.” Moses was out shepherding his father-in-law’s sheep, sees a burning bush, goes and investigates, and now, all of a sudden, “You want me to go to Pharaoh and lead your people out of Egypt?!” What does Moses do? He says to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” Moses protested to God. God was saying, “Moses, I’m giving you an opportunity to go and lead my people out of bondage.”
When we see God giving us opportunities, there are a couple of things we have to get rid of. If we are going to walk in those opportunities, or seize those opportunities, we have to get rid of excuses.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,Hebrews 12:1
Those weights could be excuses. We have to put aside every excuse that we can come up with to tell God that we aren’t capable of whatever the opportunity is that He has presented to us. When Moses gave God all his excuses, God answered him and said, “I will be with you.”
Moses goes on and protests again and tells God “If I go to the people of Israel and tell them the God of your ancestors has sent me to you, they will ask me, what is your (God’s) name?” Another excuse. God says, “Tell them I Am Who I Am. Say to the people of Israel that I Am has sent you.” Moses had a lot of opposition he had to overcome – he gave a lot of excuses. Did he ultimately lead God’s people out, yes.
The woman with the issue of blood in Mark 5 was a woman presented with an opportunity. She knew if she could touch the hem of Jesus’s garment, she’d be healed. The woman did not make any excuses, and she had plenty of legitimate ones. She was considered unclean. She had spent all her money trying to get helped, but to no avail. And, this had been going on for TWELVE YEARS! Because of the crowds of people, it is reasonable to think this woman got on the ground and in the dirt and mud to touch the hem of Jesus. But, that didn’t stop her.
Another thing we must get rid of when it comes to opportunities is fear. You cannot allow fear to control your actions or your thoughts. If you do, you won’t take advantage of the opportunities. The Bible tells us in 2 Timothy 1:7, “for God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love, and of a sound mind.”
One thing we have to understand about opportunities that God gives us is that they do not come without opposition. We would like everything to be comfortable for us and every obstacle removed, so we can just ease our way into it without any challenges. That is not how God’s opportunities are usually presented to us. They come with opposition because the world and the enemy don’t want you to walk in the blessings and the opportunities that God has for us.
“My grace is sufficient for you, and My strength is perfected in your weakness.” We must understand that even though we encounter oppositions, when God’s opportunities are presented to us, God gives us the grace to overcome those oppositions, not to make excuses.
What opportunity is God presenting to you? Are you giving Him reasons you’ll fail or thanking Him for grace and praising Him early for the victory?
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