Moses, Reluctant Servant (Lord, Please Send Someone Else)
Welcome to Real Life. I picture Moses as a strong man of immense faith standing up to Pharaoh and leading the Israelites out of Egypt. That’s why I love this verse:
But Moses said, “O Lord, please send someone else to do it.”
Let me explain.
The Israeli people are growing in strength and number during their sojourn in Egypt. This frightens Pharaoh. In order to control them, he forces the Israelites into slavery. He also proclaims an edict: every male infant born to Hebrew parents is to be killed. So Moses should have died on the day of his birth. Instead, God has other plans. This son of slaves is adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter. He grows up in the palace. Yet, Moses retains an affinity for his people. So that when he witnesses an Egyptian mistreating an Israelite, Moses kills the Egyptian. Fearing Pharaoh’s reprisal, he flees Egypt and lands in Midian. There, Moses leaves behind the stress of the big city and begins a peaceful new life as a country shepherd.
Me? Moses immediately decides this is a bad idea.
Moses: They’ll never believe you sent me. Why would they listen to me?
God: I’m giving you three miraculous signs as proof: 1) your staff will become a snake, 2) your hand will grow leprous – then heal, and 3) water from the Nile poured on dry ground will turn to blood.
Moses: I’m no public speaker. I’m not eloquent. I stumble over my words.
God: I made your mouth. I’ll help you speak and teach you what to say.
Finally Moses blurts out, “O Lord, please send someone else to do it.”
Moses wants his people rescued. He’s seen their misery. He wants them set free. But, he’s a realist. What God’s calling him to do is impossible. Moses has lived in the palace. He knows Pharaoh’s power. The king of Egypt could kill him at a whim. And Pharaoh won’t be happy with this request. He won’t want to lose his free labor pool of slaves. This is a no-win assignment. Moses wants no part of it. Can’t he just continue as a simple shepherd? He can cheer God on from the sidelines. He’d rather not get involved.
I’ve been there. I’ve heard God’s call ... and balked. I’ve made excuses. Who am I? I’m no one special. Why should I write, teach, or share my faith? Why would anyone listen to me? I don’t have the talent, the resources, the guts to obey God. Can’t someone else do it?
That’s why I love this verse. Moses’ faithless words encourage me. Because even though he begins poorly, he doesn’t stay there. Moses was no one special. He did not possess the talent or resources or guts to live out God’s call. But here’s the thing: Moses did not rescue Israel. God did. Moses simply needed to obey, one step at a time. As he did, God grew him into a leader, a man of immense faith, and one of the greatest prophets this world has ever known.
And if God can use a reluctant servant like Moses, maybe there’s hope for someone like me.
Taking it further …
- Is God calling you to something hard? Do you want to say, “Lord, please send someone else”? Remember Moses. You can’t do the impossible. But, God can.
 Exodus 4:13
 See earlier blog “Joseph’s Long Road to Greatness”
 Eventually, Moses become known as someone who speaks to God face to face as a man speaks to his friend.
 Exodus 3:6