March 8, Tuesday

Editor’s Note:  The AMI QT Devotionals from March 7-13 are provided by Kate Moon.  Kate has been serving the Lord in E. Asia for nearly 15 years. 

Devotional Thoughts for Today

Acts 7:23-29

When Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his fellow Israelites.  He saw one of them being mistreated by an Egyptian, so he went to his defense and avenged him by killing the Egyptian.  Moses thought his own people would realize that God was using him to rescue them, but they did not.  The next day Moses came upon two Israelites who were fighting.  He tried to reconcile them by saying, “Men, you are brothers; why do you want to hurt each other?” But the man who was mistreating the other pushed Moses aside and said, “Who made you ruler and judge over us? Do you want to kill me as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?”  When Moses heard this, he fled to Midian, where he settled as a foreigner and had two sons.

8Sometimes when children of immigrants visit the countries their parents originally came from, it can be both exhilarating and traumatic.  They often go to visit because they are looking for their roots, a sense of belonging, but sometimes they end up being rejected by the very people they are longing most to find connection with. When they walk into a store and can’t speak the language quite correctly, people wonder what is wrong with them.  If they inadvertently say or do something rude, people assume it was intentional and react accordingly.  Through such experiences, they discover things are more complicated than they’d imagined.

When Moses is 40 years old, after a lifetime of being brought up in the Egyptian palace, he decides to go visit “his people.” When he sees an Israelite being mistreated by an Egyptian, he makes his choice as to whose side he feels he belongs on, but as he continues to make attempts to help, he fails to do it in a way that people can understand or accept.  Also, because he was an Israelite like them but had somehow escaped slavery and had all these advantages in life, perhaps out of resentment and jealousy, he is rejected all the more.

Moses’ life parallels Jesus’ in that both left privileged backgrounds to identify with a people in slavery.  Both are rejected by the very people they came to save, and for Moses, at first it was enough to make him reject his people right back.  He leaves them, Egypt, and goes to live in land where he doesn’t have to deal with either.  But Jesus does not give up on His people, and we all know that in the end, God does not let Moses do so either.  Is there anyone we are tempted to reject or give up on today?  Someone we had the greatest hopes of connecting with whose rejection is hurting us the most?  Nevertheless, can we follow the example of Jesus and Moses and continue to reach out in love?

Prayer

Lord Jesus, would you give me the grace and wisdom today to reach out to those who have rejected me?  I’m sure I’ve made my share of mistakes in the ways I’ve tried to relate to people.  Please forgive me, show me the error of my ways, and help me to change.  In Your name I pray. Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Revelation 17

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Lunch Break Study

Read and compare the following two verses:

Acts 7:22:  Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in speech and action.

Exodus 4:10: Moses said to the LORD, “O Lord, I have never been eloquent, neither in the past nor since you have spoken to your servant.  I am slow of speech and tongue.”

Questions to Consider

  1. What apparent contradiction do you notice in these two verses?
  2. The first verse describes Moses before he left Egypt; the second, 40 years after he left Egypt. What life experiences did he have between these two points of time?  How could they account for these two seemingly opposite depictions of Moses?
  3. Which description of Moses do you think was true? Have certain failures or disappointments in life affected your perception of whether or not you are fit to carry out a particular commission of God?

Notes

  1. The Acts passage says that Moses was powerful in speech, but this comes as somewhat of a surprise as Moses is also famous for saying to the Lord in Exodus that he was not eloquent.
  2. He had killed a man, been rejected by his own people, and lived in a foreign land for forty years. Perhaps he’d had to learn a foreign language and couldn’t remember the last time he’d been eloquent. Perhaps he felt he’d failed in life and lost confidence.
  3. I think that when God created Moses, He had indeed given him certain abilities that made him fit to accomplish the task God had for him. Ability is not the most important factor in doing God’s work, but we do need to reject any false perceptions of our limitations that keep us from engaging in His work.

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Evening Reflection

Did you experience any rejection or failure today that you need to put behind you?  Give them to the Lord at this time, and ask Him for visions of hope for the future to take their place.

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