Wednesday, March 16, 2005
While our Ministry Headquarters was being built, we had a problem. We were soon moving out of the space we had rented in another area, and we had no space to move into and the ministry couldn't stop in between! That's when my wife began to take a second look at the one structure on the land that we were about to build on - an old pole barn. At first glance, it looked like a good storm could knock it over. Someone jokingly suggested that it was still standing only because the termites were holding hands! But my wife has this incredible ability to see potential in something that everyone else would tend to give up on. She persuaded me to consult with a contractor friend, who affirmed that, surprisingly, this was a building with a good foundation and solid rafters. So we went to work. Within weeks that old barn became a wonderful temporary office building, roofed with donated shingles and covered with donated siding. Today, it still houses some of our Team and it serves some vital purposes in our ministry. And when visitors come, they can't figure out why we keep calling it "the barn." We know what it was before my wife saw what it could be!
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "What's So Great About Being Ordinary."
All our lives, I've watched my wife do amazing things with ordinary material. You and I serve a God like that! It's clear from the Bible that God actually prefers to do His greatest works through the most unlikely people and unlikely tools. So if you think you're just "ordinary," that doesn't disqualify you from God doing something very special through you. It actually qualifies you!
You can see that so clearly in Exodus 3, beginning with verse 1, our word for today from the Word of God. God is preparing to do something that people will talk about throughout history - the miraculous rescue of the Jews from slavery in Egypt. It's amazing what and who He uses. The story begins: "Moses was tending the flock of ... his father-in-law ... and he led the flock to the far side of the desert and he came to Horeb (that's what we know as Mt. Sinai), the mountain of God." Horeb is just another mountain among many in this desert region. But when God chooses to make it part of His plan, it's not just another mountain ever again - now the mountain of God!
The Bible says it was, "there the angel of the Lord appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush." A bush - one of countless bushes out there in the desert. But God chooses that bush to be the platform for His awesome announcement about Israel's rescue. Later when Moses questions whether he's up to the job God is calling him to, God asks him what is in his hand, and Moses says, "A staff." When he obeys God's command to throw it down, it miraculously turns into a snake, and then back into a stick. As the story starts, it's the rod of Moses. Verses later, it says Moses "took the staff of God in his hand." ( Exodus 4:20)
Get the picture? An ordinary mountain becomes the mountain of God. An ordinary bush becomes the voice of God. An ordinary stick becomes the rod of God. An ordinary man becomes the rescuer of God. An ordinary people become the people of God. And, an ordinary you can become the instrument of God to help change the lives of people all around you to do a work for God that you could never imagine doing, because it's not about you. It's about the awesome God who's using you. He loves to use ordinary people because everyone knows it's got to be God!
It won't be your ordinaryness that disqualifies you from being part of a great work for God. It will be your unwillingness, or your unavailability, or succumbing to your fears. Don't miss what God wants to do through you. He does His most amazing things through the most ordinary material!