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WEEK 7 - MOSES AND THE PLAGUES

Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say. (Exodus 4:12)

Have you ever allowed fear to keep you from doing something that you wanted to do? During my first few years of coaching, I was terrified before every game. I loved coaching, but I would get so nervous and afraid before the games started, that I would wish that I wasn’t a coach.


Over time, as I got better as a coach and my teams had more success, my fear dropped drastically. Today, I still have nervousness and fear before every game, but it's a healthy fear that keeps me motivated to do my best.


Time, practice, and success has helped me manage my fear.


The story of Exodus and how Moses led the Israelites out of Egyptian slavery has also helped me with my fear. Aside from Jesus, Moses might be the most well-known person in the Bible, but did you know he had a speech impediment? Moses is the man whom God chose to lead his Israelite people out of Egyptian slavery, and he did so while being scared and suffering from a speaking problem.


Moses was born a Hebrew, meaning his family is descendants of Abraham and Jacob, who I have written about before. He was born in Egypt when all Hebrews were slaves.


When Moses was a young baby, the Pharoah ordered all of the Israelite baby boys to be killed because he was afraid that there were too many Israelites, but Moses’s mother protected him by hiding him and then putting him in a papyrus basket on the reeds on the banks of the Nile River.


The Pharoah’s daughter quickly found him and raised Moses as her son. He was raised as royalty, but he always knew he was an Israelite. When he was older, Moses went out to where his people were and watched them work when he saw an Egyptian beating an Israelite. Moses killed the Egyptians. When the Pharoah found out, he tried to have Moses killed, but Moses fled and hid in the desert of Midian for 40 years.


One day, God appeared to Moses as a fire within a bush and said He has seen the misery of his people in Egypt and heard them crying out because of their slave drivers. God said He was concerned about their suffering, and He was sending Moses to bring his people the Israelites out of Egypt.


Moses didn’t want to go. Moses said, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me?” (Exodus 4:1). He then said, “I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant. I am slow of speech and tongue." The Lord said to him, "Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord? Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say."


God also sent Moses’s brother, Aaron with him. God said, “You shall speak to him and put words in his mouth; I will help both of you speak and will teach you what to do. He will speak to the people for you, and it will be as if he were your mouth and as if you were God to him.”


Then Moses, with the help of God and his brother, led the Israelites out of Egypt after the long story of the 10 plagues and the Pharaoh’s opposition.


But after the Israelites left, Pharoah and his army chased him. The Israelites were so afraid that they wanted to turn back and go back to being slaves. When trapped between the Pharaoh and the Red Sea, Moses told the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today.” (Exodus 14:13)


God parted the Red Sea, allowing the Israelites to cross, and He then caused it to flow back on the Egyptian arming and killing them all.


That day the Lord saved Israel from the hands of the Egyptians, and Israel saw the Egyptians lying dead on the shore. And when the Israelites saw the mighty hand of the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and put their trust in him and Moses his servant. (Exodus 14:30-31)


The job God called Moses to do was full of difficulties and challenges, but Moses never hid his emotions and questions from God.


God used Moses, someone who struggled with speaking, to speak for the Israelites. That tells me that anything is possible with God’s help. Moses was afraid, just like I am at times. But God spoke to Moses and was there for him when Moses needed it.


This week, when fear hits me, I will take some time by myself to pray and meditate on God’s word, and wait for Him to give me the strength I need to believe and succeed. I will not let fear stop me from doing what I want and need to do. I will trust and believe that even if I am stuck, like the Israelites were stuck between the Egyptian army and the Red Sea, God will create a way for me to succeed.


THIS WEEK


1 - When was a time when you were afraid to do something, but you overcame your fear and did it anyways? What helped you do what you were afraid to do?


2 - Where does your confidence come from? How do you build confidence in yourself?


3 - When is your confidence the lowest?


4 - What can you do or say to yourself to build your faith or confidence when needed?




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