Eight or nine colors on the kitchen cabinets! How could this have gotten so out-of-hand? It began with so much excitement: I had read yellow is the new color for kitchen cabinets, and it’s my favorite color, so woohoo! Two rights=gorgeous kitchen, correct? No. Adult child #1 coming inside after several cabinets have been painted: “Oh!! Gross!! You’ve got to change that!” (That was the condensed version). So back to Lowe’s for more paint, different colors. Adult child #2 comes in: “OH!! DOUBLE GROSS!! That is soooo dated!! So “70’s!! UGH!!” Two hours later he returns with a million (give or take) swatches. I pick four. Now I’m up to blue, aqua, bright yellow, light yellow, white, green, taupe, light gray….. and I hate them all. I want my pale yellow back. Fourteen trips to Lowe’s. Why?? Because I have no self-confidence in my selections, and am trying to please my children (who don’t look at it every day, by the way.)
The next day my husband asks if we can “talk.” (That translates to “there’s a problem.” I’m a wife, I know these things.) He sits down with a sheet of paper filled (literally every line) with words. I didn’t read them–I knew he would elaborate on them. He did. “You,” he said not unsympathetically, “are a people-pleaser. You don’t know how to say ‘I want yellow, it’s my kitchen, so get over it.'” He was right; what could I say? He continued listing my insecurities, the reasons why my self-esteem is so low, and ended by recounting all the millions of ways God has blessed us. With so many blessings, I should have no problem with insecurity. I went to bed properly–and lovingly–chastised.
When I woke Sunday morning and pulled up the sermon notes for the Study (this one, and the ones that go out from the church’s website), the title was a punch in the stomach: Overcomer: Overcoming Insecurity! Do you ever feel like you’ve been set up? Now is a good time to click on the link here, http://www.trbc.org/service-archive, and select the sermon for Sunday, July 24. This is Thomas Road Baptist Church’s normal Sunday morning service, preached by Jonathan Falwell. If you will watch the service, you can easily do the study that follows here, by yourself, with a friend, your family, or in a group setting. Take a question or two each day, or do it in one setting, but fill your soul with the knowledge of God’s word, and grow in Him each week. And no, Pastor Falwell and my husband had not set me up!
It is often said that failure to try something is worse than trying, then failing. “Failure to try” happens frequently because we perceive ourselves incompetent to accomplish a certain task. Can you think of an example? Have your notebook handy, writing down answers that will help you internalize the important lessons in the study.
Today we continue to learn from the life of Moses, who seemed to consider himself totally inadequate for the job God was calling him to do. His personal perception of himself kept him from hearing God’s promise to be with Him through it all. Let’s focus on how he pushed through the obstacles to trust God.
Think About or Discuss:
I’m Not Good Enough or Smart Enough
- Read Exodus 4:1-3. When was the last time you actually did not take an active part in something because of fear that you weren’t good enough? Don’t forget to write down answers!
- How does that differ from the answers Moses gave God?
I Don’t Know What to Say
- Read verses 10-12. If you’ve been saved very long, you recognize the “nudge” God gives when He is asking something of you. How have you let this fear stop you from obeying Him?
- Is this reason one that keeps you from witnessing? If so, try to search out the root cause: is it because you are afraid of offending someone, or afraid they will ask something you don’t know how to answer, as Moses was (vs 1)?
- How can you trust God enough to obey Him, allowing Him to equip you if He calls you to a certain work?
I’m Too Scared; Someone Else Should Do It
- Read verses 13-16. Moses continued to beg God to “let someone else do it!” Yet God had not only personally picked Moses, but had constantly given His promise to be with him. Why did God not give up on Moses?
- If it is your nature to tell God, “Let someone else do it,” how can you change that?
- What arguments do you use with God? What would it take for you to trust Him to be with you, and give you the words to speak?
When You Trust God with Your Today, God Will Take Care of Your Future
- Read verse 31. After Moses’ last protestation, when God became angry, He still used Moses. Do you think you have ever made God angry with your refusal to do His will? Write down anything you think of.
- Trust is a day-to-day issue. How can you better trust Him today to push forward victoriously?
- If you feel that God wants you to witness, or minister, and promises to be with you, how will you trust Him then? As was asked last week, would you feel differently if you heard God say to you aloud, “I will be with you”?
Moses obviously had the same hang-ups, habits, and hurts that you experience. No one is exempt from feeling inadequate to serve a holy God. As you go through your week, jot down the times you feel self-doubt, so that you can see whether they are as valid as you feel they are! Perhaps they are old burdens from childhood years, and you have let Satan browbeat you with a constant barrage of “not worthy.” Look up Scriptures that address your lack of confidence, understand that you are a child of the King, and write beside each of your insecurities the blessings God has given you, and the things you have done for His kingdom. Let them make a difference in your life. Pray this week that you trust God with a full heart!
Points to Ponder: 1) No one is ever smart enough on our own but with God, all things are possible (Philippians 4:13). 2) Our words will always be insufficient, but if our heart is available, He will speak through us. 3) Yes, there’s always someone else, but He called you for a particular task. 4) It is only when we trust God that we will begin to see how powerful He really is!
Memory Verse: Exodus 4:31: “So the people believed, and when they heard that the Lord had visited the children of Israel and that He had looked on their affliction, then they bowed their heads and worshiped.”
Focal Passage: Exodus 4:1-31