One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. Glancing this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. The next day he went out and saw two Hebrews fighting. He asked the one in the wrong, “Why are you hitting your fellow Hebrew?”
The man said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? Are you thinking of killing me as you killed the Egyptian?” Then Moses was afraid and thought, “What I did must have become known.” When Pharaoh heard of this, he tried to kill Moses, but Moses fled from Pharaoh and went to live in Midian, where he sat down by a well. Exodus 2:11-15 (NIV)
Most of us haven’t killed a guy. (If you have, please don’t raise your hand.) Moses actions weren’t premeditated. It was the rage of the moment. His zeal for the oppression of God’s people got the best of him. He took matters into his own hands.
While most of us haven’t killed, we’re certainly taken matters into our own hands at one time or another. Maybe it was even for a good cause. Maybe God has given us a heart to see wrongs righted or the innocent protected. Maybe we have a passion to see people use their God-given gifts and talents and discover their purposes.
It’s one thing to follow God’s call on your life as a believer. It’s another if you must argue, fuss and fight to get there. Often when things aren’t moving according to plan (our plan), we take matters into our own hands and make things happen. Don’t we applaud those who take initiative? But, sometimes our initiative is really impatience.
Jesus said: I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5, NIV). Nothing? Really? Those of us with Type A personalities struggle with this verse. (Type B’s can just chill at this point. Okay, you already are.)
Now, don’t get me wrong. Jesus wasn’t advocating that we do nothing. The reverse of this passage is also true: “If you do nothing, it will be apart from Jesus.” God has things for us to do. Often those things don’t follow our timing, our initiative, or our desired outcome. And, that’s okay.
The goal of this life is not to right every wrong. Our goal is not to singlehandedly change the world. Those jobs belong to Jesus. Our job is to surrender ourselves entirely to God. As we move closer to Him, we will be amazed at what He can accomplish through us.
What situation is eating at you these days? How have you prayed about it? Are you sure that the action you want to take is going to help or are you about to get in God’s way? He will give you clarity.