What Is That In Your Hand?

Sunday, February 19, 2023
Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Lead On O King Eternal"1 (Lyrics)

Thirteen years ago, in the early spring, my husband and I surveyed with satisfaction our recent purchase, a 22-foot travel trailer. After we retired from teaching, we planned to use it to go south, where the winters would be warmer, and to take part in volunteer projects.

We were pleased with our purchase, but by itself, it wouldn't be any use to us. We had to equip it so that we could use it for our winter plans, and then connect it to our big sport utility vehicle.

My husband checked all the connections, filled the propane tanks, bought extra sewer hose, and made sure that we had an extra external battery for an additional power source.

I organized the inside, buying small quantities of non-perishable staples, preparing meals to put into the tiny freezer, and selecting and packing clothes and linens. I gathered pots, cutlery, and Mom's lightweight dinnerware, and tried to fit stuff into appropriate spaces. Finally, our trailer was equipped, and we were ready to embark on our new adventure.

Just as we had to equip our trailer, God had to equip Moses with what he needed to free the Hebrew people, already enslaved for 400 long years. Moses protested to the Lord when He told him to confront Pharaoh, the ruler of Egypt, and demand that he free them.

Exodus 4:1-2 – But Moses protested again, "What if they won't believe me or listen to me? What if they say 'The Lord never appeared to you'?" Then the Lord asked him, "What is that in your hand?" "A shepherd's staff," Moses replied. (NLT)

A shepherd's staff would not be useful in itself to free the Hebrews. But God imbued it with miraculous power, turning it into a snake to impress the Pharaoh, and later enabling Moses to use his staff to part the waters of the Red Sea and to strike a rock to get drinking water. In the same way, God empowers us to do what He wants us to do, but we must connect with His power.

Hebrews 13:20-21a – Now may the God of peace — who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood — may he equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. (NLT)

Romans 12:6a – In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. (NLT)

It is God Who gives each of us the capability to do what He wants to accomplish through us. To be effective to do what pleases Him, we have to realize that it is God Who has endowed us, and that through His giftings, we can do what we do best. We need to be willing to use our gifts wholeheartedly in His service. We can do that, because it is He Who puts in our hand whatever equips us to serve Him. What is that in your hand?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for equipping us through Your power to do what pleases You. Help us to use the capabilities that You give us to serve You. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Alice Burnett <terrencera.burnett@gmail.com>
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks for the encouraging words, Alice.

    Excellent application, Alice. We definitely need to use our gifts wholeheartedly in His service.

    Thanks, Alice, for your devotional writing this morning. This teaching has been repeated often to me recently, by no accident! The Lord is speaking to me.

    Thanks, Alice; another encouragement to use all that God has equipped me with to serve Him!
    Bless you,

    Very good devotion, Alice. Your writing keeps us wanting more And you make a good point. The scripture used is inspiration. Thank you, using your gift.
    Had to ask myself, “What is that in your hand?”

    Hi Alice,
    Thanks once more for writing so effectively.
    It would seem our traveling days are behind us, and I must say we had wonderful trips and adventures to remember.

    Greetings Alice and many thanks for another of your splendid writings. Yes our Heavenly Father has given each of us very special gifts and we surely need use these gifts in the best way of honouring Him and by sharing in good ways with others. Blessings for this devotional and have an enjoyable day.

    Good Morning Alice!
    Thanks for this devotional and the challenge it presents. I listened to Robin reading it and as he got to the last line, before the prayer, and asked “What is that in your hand?” I smiled as it ‘literally’ was my coffee mug. I realize there’s a deeper meaning, but it got me thinking about the gift of hospitality and have decided to invite a lady, who will be alone on Family Day, for lunch tomorrow! Step one!
    Thanks again and blessings to you.

    Good morning, Alice,
    It is great to give us a question to help us ponder what has God given us to use in His plan for us. I think God has given you the skill to write very good devotionals to keep us moving forward with His plan for us.
    It is wonderful how you can take something that has happened in your life and turn it into a powerful lesson for others. It is so true that God can equip us, but until we figure it out and use it, we do not serve His plan for us. Thanks for sharing. Blessings.

    Thank you Alice for sharing this encouraging devotional with us!

    Loved your devotion! God bless you both!

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