Earlier today, I was thinking about Moses. Exodus 4:10 says:
And Moses said unto the LORD, O my LORD, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.While there is some debate as to what exactly Moses meant by this, it is quite clear that Moses believe that he was inadequate for the job due to something which pertained to his ability to speak. In other words, Moses wasn't exactly... perfect. Now you might say that was a physical imperfection and ahem... we often can't help that. Especially if we were born with it. However, I would also like to point out this little incident from the second chapter of Exodus:
And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren.Before you start to justify Moses and say that he was only trying to protect a fellow Israelite, you need to remember exactly who Moses was. You only have to look back a few verses in order to discover that he'd been adopted in infancy by Pharaoh's daughter and was raised in the palace. As someone recognized as a member of the royal family, he had some authority. The Bible says Moses looked around to make sure there were no witnesses so he clearly thought about it before he committed the act and knew full well that he was committing murder. In verse 14, we discover that this was viewed as murder by an Israelite as well.
And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand. Exodus 2:11-12
Pharaoh learns of this incident and Moses flees for his life. Now Moses is a fugitive from the law. Hm...let's see... an escaped murderer with (premeditated I might add) with a speech defect who was now living as a fugitive out in the desert tending sheep. This... is the man whom God called to lead His people out of Egypt. This is the man who is viewed as the author of the first five books of the Bible. This is the man who saw the "back" of God! (Exodus 33:22-23)
My thoughts turned to others in the Bible. There was Deborah who in an unprecedented move was used as a judge. Her imperfection was that she was female instead of male. This should be a lesson to us that God uses whom He chooses to use in the manner which He deems fit whether we think that person should be used or not.
Then there was David who was mocked for being a youth. There was Rahab who was a prostitute, Ruth who was a widow and a "heathen". We have Gideon who was fearful, we have Peter who managed to often say the wrong thing at the wrong time and Paul who was zealously doing the wrong thing! Jacob was deceitful, Thomas was a doubter. Matthew was a tax collector and it was well-known that in first century Palestine, tax collectors were thieves. The same was true for Zacchaus. You get the idea. The Bible is full of imperfect people whom God loved and chose to use despite their imperfections.
This tells me that regardless of my "imperfections" and "weaknesses", God still loves me and can desires to use me. Daily He is molding and making me, smoothing out the rough edges there, pulling this in and pushing that out and making me into the vessel He envisions me to be. A beautiful work of His hands.
Preacers would help their congregations more if they were willing to use themselves in their Sunday lessons. We need broken people to reach a hurting world, not people who believe they must come across as perfect before they will be respected. However, people can be very harsh in their criticism, so I can understand why it's hard to be transparent in front of such people.
God said that His strength is made perfect in weakness (2 Cor. 12:9). Let us then make ourselves available to be used by Him in our weakness, so that God can get the glory and not us!