March 22, Friday

Devotional Thoughts for Today

“Everyone Gets to Play”

Exodus 14:21-22; 26-28 (NIV)

Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and all that night the Lord drove the sea back with a strong east wind and turned it into dry land. The waters were divided, 22 and the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with a wall of water on their right and on their left. 26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea so that the waters may flow back over the Egyptians and their chariots and horsemen.” 27 Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and at daybreak the sea went back to its place. The Egyptians were fleeing toward it, and the Lord swept them into the sea. 28 The water flowed back and covered the chariots and horsemen—the entire army of Pharaoh that had followed the Israelites into the sea. Not one of them survived.

My children play in a football league where “everyone gets to play.” Regardless of one’s skills or the score, the coach will manage the roster so that every child is given a chance to play the game. It’s clear that some kids are better than others; nevertheless, everyone gets to play albeit in different positions (e.g., not everyone gets to play the quarterback).

That is a picture of God’s community.

In today’s passage, as God is about perform one of His greatest miracles, He invites Moses to play the quarterback, if you will. The parting of the Red Sea is a miracle that is still celebrated by the Israelites today; it was the day of their glorious freedom as they crossed on dry land while the Egyptians were later destroyed. Now, while God could have performed this feat from the heavens, He allows Moses to stretch out his hands in performing the miracle. It’s perplexing to think that an Almighty God, who has all the power over all of creation, chooses to use humans. But there is no denying that God’s desire is to use us to accomplish His works on earth—how wonderful, amazing and humbling!

Therefore, do not doubt that God can and does use His servants to accomplish some of His greatest works. As a follower of Christ, you are certainly one of His servants. God can and will use you. So, instead of assuming that God uses everyone else except you, ask Him to take your hands and use them for God’s purposes and God’s glory.

John Wimber, founder of Vineyard Christian Fellowship and head of Vineyard Ministries International, often said, “Everyone gets to play.” He understood clearly that following Jesus wasn’t a spectator sport—meaning, Jesus wanted everyone to discover their own set of gifts and use them to make a unique contribution towards building each other up in the Lord.

So, stop spectating; instead, stretch out your hands and see what God can do through you.  And give Him all the glory for using us despite of us.

Prayer: Lord, use me to serve others. Use me to tell Your story to others. Use me to bless others. Use me to encourage others. Use me to build up others. Use me to perform miracles. In Your name, Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Acts 14


Lunch Break Study

Read 1 Peter 4:8-11 (NIV): Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 9 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. 11 If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Questions to Consider

  1. What is the purpose of the gifts you have been given?
  2. Do you think that some gifts are more notable than others? How does verse 11 dispel that notion?
  3. Do you believe that God can accomplish His works through you? Why or why not?

Notes

  1. To serve others as faithful stewards of God’s grace.  
  2. Whether one speaks or simply serves, “in all things” God is praised.
  3. Personal response.

Evening Reflection

In what ways were you able to serve others today? If you missed an opportunity, ask God to grant you another opportunity tomorrow to use your gift to serve others.

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