A Lifeless Piece of Wood
Today I’ve been thinking about the call God gave to Moses to go to Egypt and challenge the greatest superpower of his day. Moses responded to God with various reasons for not accepting the call: Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh? They will not believe that you sent me. I don’t speak well.
God patiently listened to Moses’ objections, and then directed his attention to the simplest thing imaginable – the staff in his hand. Moses had probably carried this staff for years. It was most certainly dead and dry; just a piece of worthless wood. But when Moses obeyed God’s command to throw it on the ground, the staff became a serpent.
Moses’ staff is used in numerous ways throughout the rest of the story of Exodus. It swallowed up the staffs of the Egyptian magicians, it turned the water of the Nile into blood, it parted the Red Sea, and brought water out of a rock. The message of Moses’ staff is that God is able. He doesn’t need our greatness to do a great work, all he needs is a lifeless piece of wood.