TAKING THE NEXT STEP
by Jeff Hagan
(Tacoma, WA, USA)
Passage to read: Exodus 3:1-12
“We are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10, NIV).
Most of us probably remember the story of Moses being rescued from death as an infant. He grew up in the palace of the mighty Pharaoh given all of the blessings and privileges of royalty. But all of that was taken away one day when he took the issue of justice into his own hands and killed a man. This act ultimately caused him to run for his life. By the time of our reading in Exodus listed above, he was taking care of a flock of sheep out in the middle of nowhere. But, then God gave Moses and new purpose, a “next step” if you will.
I have a feeling that many of us fear that our most important and fulfilling days are in our past. Maybe you have left a good and promising career to raise a family, or maybe as you look around your house you notice all of your kids are grown and gone and you feel lonely, you are suffering from the “empty nest” syndrome. Maybe your skills which have brought you this far in life are of no longer of value due to the ever increasing advances in technology, or perhaps retirement is just around the corner and your mind is filled with uncertainty due to the unknown elements that come with that stage of life. Maybe you have just graduated and it's time to move on to college and you are nervous and don't know what to expect, or you've just finished college and it's time to move out into the working world and you are concerned about that “next step.”
Whatever your situation in life, no matter where you are, God still has important work for you to do. It could be something as simple as sending notes of encouragement to those on your churches prayer list, it could be helping visitors feel welcome on their first visit. Or, it could be something as complex as advocating for the rights of the unborn, volunteering in the cancer wing of a hospital, or being on the elder board during the transition of bringing on a new pastor for your church. Whatever it is, no matter how big or small, no matter how insignificant or overwhelming it may seem to you, it is something God wants you to do. And, as He said to Moses He says to us, “I will be with you.” So, take that “next step,” whatever it is, and take it boldly.
Suggested prayer: Dear Lord, guide us to know what our next step should be as we seek to follow your will. Help us to trust you and serve you faithfully as we take that next step. No matter how big or small it may seem to us, we trust that in you there is a purpose for it. Please be with us and direct us in every stage of our lives. We pray these things in the name of Jesus Christ your Son. Amen.