Can You Pass the Test?
“. . . he led the flock to the backside of the desert . . .” Exodus 3:1
After murdering an Egyptian, Moses fled to Midian, the farthest end of the wilderness, where there was little vegetation, very few shrubs. It was an exceedingly quiet, dreary place, where he would spend the next forty years. Moses’ plan was to live in a place of safety, hopefully to outlive his fatal mistake in Egypt. But God had a different plan for Moses’ time in Midian. Midian was a time of teaching and testing.
The Lord was going to make him a pastor of sheep. God was teaching Moses more through the sheep than Moses taught the sheep. When the sheep cried, he learned to patiently serve by tending to stubborn, stupid sheep. And when they went astray he would conduct a search and rescue mission to bring them back.
God was also testing Moses while he was tending the flock of Jethro. Tending sheep wasn’t a glamourous job! Nobody was trying to steal his job. Moses was in the depths of obscurity. He was a total nobody. There were bigger things ahead for Moses, but he had to pass through Midian to get to where God wanted him to be. And so must we.
To serve the Lord in any arena and to do so effectively, there is a test that every person must pass The test of obscurity.
God will place us in concealed situations where we feel overlooked, unappreciated and frustrated, just to see if we will be faithful when no one is watching, to see if our motivation is for fame or faith. Obscurity tests the level of our dependence in service. It strips us of our belief in our giftedness, charisma and talent as the sole means of promotion.
Some fail the test by assuming because the position doesn’t have a fancy title, or the crowd is not large, that it doesn’t really matter, so they slop through the job.
In his youth, Moses might have felt himself worthy to serve the living God. He might have said, “Okay, God I got this, I’m able, and I will do it for you,” but with age, maturity and time Moses could only think of his unfitness for the gigantic undertaking set before him.
Moses was well aware that his success was based on his dependence on God’s ability. Dependence is born in the midst of obscurity.
Are you willing to be overlooked in order to be refined for God’s greater use?