When God Removes Your "What Ifs?"

Sometimes as I’m writing a blog post, the overarching theme or idea comes quickly.  The details of what I feel I need to write however, can come at a much slower pace.  This week is one such week where God laid an idea on my heart but I sat at a blank screen for quite some time, trying to move past writer’s block.  Dumbfounded, I determined to move forward and to start just typing, hoping God would give me a clearer glimpse of Himself.   

What follows here hopefully resonates because I believe there are many of us who need to deal with the issue of fear and anxiety.  And I think those issues overshadow our own concept of God:  how big, how marvelous, and how awesome the God is that we serve.   

I’ve taken a stab at the notion of choosing faith over fear in an earlier post (see What Are You Afraid Of?).  I would consider this Part 2 of that message and a continuation of the thought that God truly is calling us deeper and wants us to move past our comfort zones. 

But how do we do this?  It’s not like faith just happens overnight.  In a true revelation of the heart, my attitude is the same as the man who approached Jesus saying “I do believe, help my unbelief.”  (Mark 9:24)  That verse alone is the balance we live in; walking between radical faith to pursue God and lingering doubt that keeps us from moving forward.   

In my quiet times over the past few weeks, God has been bringing to mind several reminders of how He delivered and provided miraculously within the Old Testament.  Stories like David and Goliath, the fall of Jericho, and the confidence of 2 spies vs. 10 to take the Promised Land.  Through these stories, God has kept whispering “I am the same God today that I was then.  If I have called you to something, will I not see it through?” 

From all of these stories, it is the account of Moses receiving his call from God at the burning bush which particularly fascinates me.  Within his conversation with God, Moses has several questions after hearing what is being asked of him: 

“Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and that I should bring the Israelites out of Egypt?” (Exodus 3:11) 

“If I go to the Israelites and say to them: The God of your fathers has sent me to you, and they ask me, ‘What is His name?’ what should I tell them?” (Exodus 3:13) 

“What if they won’t believe me and will not obey me but say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?” (Exodus 4:1) 

In each moment, God answers Moses in a way which should affirm and solidify his faith.  God even gives convincing signs and wonders to Moses:  the staff turning into a snake, the leprous hand in the cloak, and the Nile River turning to blood.  To all of this we would say “OK Moses, you are ready.  God is definitely with you.”   

To our observation, all of the “what ifs?” have been removed. 

Still, fear gets in the way of Moses’ ability to move forward and renders him paralyzed.  He believes he’s not eloquent in speech, he’s not a good enough leader, and his plea is for God to just find someone else.  He’s presented with a promise from the living God and shown miraculous things, yet he still does not want the job.   

Truth be told, this is the place that you and I find ourselves in thousands of years later.  We too hear the promises of God.  We too hear His call.  We too know that there is a rumbling within us; a holy calling and destiny that cannot be fulfilled through anyone else or at any other time than the present.  God is with us!  He’ll go before us!  Why would we doubt? 

Dear Christian brother or sister:  I am challenging you and I am challenging myself to not stay safe any longer.  I am challenging you to pray big, bold prayers and to step out in faith trusting a God who dreams bigger dreams for us than we could ever imagine.   

Aren’t you glad that the story of Moses didn’t end with his rejection of God’s offer?  He did move forward.  God gave him the resources and the ability to go before Pharaoh and demand “Let My people go!”  God delivered His people and kept His end of the bargain to be with Moses and empower him as a leader of hundreds of thousands.  Moses’ legacy is that of a spiritual giant; a man that God used in mighty ways.   

God is still removing “what ifs?” today and what He promises will come to fruition.  I don’t know what God is laying on your heart to do.  But I do know that when He takes away all the reasons to doubt, we have no other choice but to obey.  Let’s step out boldly together and expect great things!   

I’m praying for you and want to encourage you along the journey.  Would love to connect with you:  info@derekcharlesjohnson.com

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