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|"Looking Beyond SEEMING Failures in
Wade E. Taylor
Wade Taylor Ministries
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose." -- Romans 8:28
This does not say that all things are good, but that even terrible things can work together to produce "good." This good is not the "things" in themselves, but rather, that the "image" of our Lord Jesus Christ is being wrought into our being, and these things have become a tool to accomplish this.
"Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ." -- Ephesians 4:13
If we rightly understand this, then it can be said that it is possible for us to be "in" the will of God, while being "out" of the will of God. This can only happen if our heart is unconditionally set toward the Lord. Then the Lord is released to use these "things" to accomplish His purposes, and also, to bring us into the very center of His will and purpose for us.
This principle can be seen in the life of Moses: "Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law, the priest of Midian." -- Exodus 3:1a
Moses knew that he was called to deliver his people, Israel. In his attempt to fulfill this calling, He failed and fled.
"And Moses was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds. And when he was full forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brethren the children of Israel. And seeing one of them suffer wrong, he defended him, and avenged him that was oppressed, and smote the Egyptian: For he supposed his brethren would have understood how that God by his hand would deliver them: but they understood not. Then fled Moses at this saying." -- Acts 7:22-25, 29a
Here, Moses is "ministering" in the wrong place to the wrong people: Jethro's sheep. Some of us who find ourselves in a similar situation feel that, although we have missed the best, we are doing the best we can, or we have given up. However, some of us who feel "out" of place, intensely desire something more and are pushing forward, seeking a meeting with the Lord.
Moses clearly fits in the second group. He was not feeling sorry for himself, nor was he sitting and doing nothing. The original vision was still alive within him, and he was doing the best he could with all that was available to him.
Moses was called to the "sheep" of Israel, but instead, he was faithfully leading the "sheep" of the priest of Midian, toward the mountain of God. This moved the heart of the Lord, who made an arrangement (a burning bush) wherein He could meet with Moses. Thus, all this was working together for good. Being "out" of the will of God, Moses was in the will of God. He was being brought to the end of his own ability, which prepared him for his meeting with the Lord.
The Lord revealed Himself to Moses in a flame of fire. Thus, the bush burned, but was not consumed. It can be said that it is yet burning, and available to us -- if our attitude is as Moses' was, and we become willing to turn aside into the Lord's manifested presence.
It would have been easier for Moses to remain in the wilderness with these sheep than to go back and face his past failure - there was no one in the wilderness to whom he could complain, so they could feel sorry for him, nor to criticize what he was doing. Jethro's "sheep" were obviously much more cooperative and appreciative, than the "flock" of Israel had been.
Overcoming the Pharaohs
However, the intention of the Lord is always to prepare us, not only for us to succeed where we had failed, but also for us to go "further." Therefore, the Lord told Moses that he was to go back and face Pharaoh, and bring deliverance to the very people from whom he had fled.
Because the Lord did not expect Moses to accomplish this in his own strength, as he had before attempted, he was instructed to "take off his shoes." Moses had walked as far as he could go in his own strength and ability. Now he would walk in the Lord's shoes and strength.
This "intervention" did not take place until Moses had come to the full end of his ability, and was willing to turn aside, as an acknowledgement of his need.
"And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burned." -- Exodus 3:3
According to modern religious thought, the burning bush should have been in front of Moses, as the correction would come thru some new methodology. Rather it was off to the side, and required an action on his part. He had to notice, "turn" from what he was doing, and submit himself to the Lord.
This concept of turning is very close to the heart of the Lord, who greatly desires that we both notice and respond to His presence. This ability does not come quickly, or easily. It requires a coming to the end of our ways, and time in the presence of the Lord, in order to develop a sensitivity to the spiritual realm. If need be, the Lord has a "Jethro," and some special "sheep" who will help accomplish this in our lives, if we will acknowledge that we have come to the end of our abilities and ways, and cry out to the Lord in need of something more.
"Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven." -- Matthew 5:3
This means that we have become absolutely destitute concerning any ability we may have, and in desperation, have become willing to turn aside. Only then can we partake of the provision of the Kingdom.
"Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted." -- Matthew 5:4
When we seemingly become stranded in the wilderness, where none of our giftings are able to function, we will mourn. We cannot help it, but the Lord understands and will comfort us. This "comfort will result from the impartation that we receive from the "burning bush" of His presence, by which we receive the enabling grace of His ability, in exchange for the loss of our abilities.
"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth." -- Matthew 5:5
Only now can we face and overcome the Pharaoh's in our lives -- all those things that actively hinder us from fulfilling the call of God.
If we become willing to turn aside and stand in the presence of this "bush" that yet burns, and receive the impartation that is available to us, this world will yet be turned to the Lord.