I’m mostly posting this as a thank-you link for my Bible Study group as we end our session on The Life of Moses. It’s a transcript of my intended testimony…which sadly did not make the 3min limit. Still, I want to thank them for their patience, so I’ve posted this up. Feel free to read if you like, skip if you don’t!
Good evening everyone. My name is Frankie, from Miss Dolly’s group. I’m twenty-two—an age where people still ask how old you are—and have been attending BSF since Lesson 2 of The Life of Moses. I’m here because I happen to live with the person who invited me, which meant that she had ample opportunity to keep bugging me about it until I went, “Okay, okay, fine, Mom! But I want a raise in my allowance.”
…except then she reminded me that I had graduated in June and ergo no longer had an allowance. Oh well.
Looking back, I probably should have joined last year’s BSF first, because the New Testament is a lot easier to chew on than the OT. It’s more the God you’re taught about when you’re a beginning Christian—a God of peace and love and reconciliation. In contrast, Moses’ God appears, at first glance at least, terrifying. I struggled with reconciling that God to my God–this God scared me–and with understanding the relevance of Moses’ journey to my life. The Hebrews considered a man of forty to be “a young man.” I was twenty-two, an embryo. How could I relate to the cinematic life of a well-seasoned hero of faith?
Most nights I glared at my mum as I slogged through questions that felt like those I’d left behind a few months ago at university. “I’m giving up sleep, a Monday night, braincells for this?”
To be honest, I’m still not over the hurdle. Sometimes, BSF can feel like a chore, especially when I have other things to do. The operative word, I guess, is feel—emotion versus action, discipline being more important than the sinking feeling I get when I see a row of verse citations I’ll have to sift through.
The discipline, I’ve found, pays off. While I did feel confused and lost 99.99% of the time, there were those 1% moments when things clicked. Once, it was in discussion of Moses’ encounter at Sinai. The questions asked when was the last time you felt that same awe of God that Moses felt. My realization…
…I couldn’t remember. It hit me that for a long time, I’d been taking my relationship with God for granted, living a double life where I wore the label but didn’t act the part. This was mostly because I felt it was too late, too weird if I suddenly did a 180 and began to walk my talk, to act as I professed. Fortunately, The Life of Moses had an answer to those concerns too–Moses was a rash, heedless, and later hesitant and fearful individual when he was called by God, and in walking with God he became who he was: the hero of the faith that we remember him to be.
And not only him, but in the Israelites I found a familar picture and a relevant hope. Grumbling, ungrateful, and rebellious on multiple occasions, these people had seen the work of the Lord firsthand and failed him on multiple occasions…and would fail him again, as shown in the Song of Moses. And yet the Lord walked them into the Promised Land, the last words from Moses being a blessing upon each of the tribes. As was said in the lectures, God judged them on His future promise, not their past failures. It is something that, as a girl who has failed multiple times, quite epically, in her faith, especially in the past few difficult, growing-up years (few weeks, even), sinks deep.
As it became clearer and clearer that the Life of Moses, far from being a dusty Old Testament account which included the dreaded book of Numbers, was actually still relevant, I began to see why I had been dragged here by my mother’s intimate coercion (I kid: my mum never forces me to do things; I just do them because I think they make her happy. Thanks, Ma.). As I journeyed with Moses, so the Lord was taking me on my own journey. See, I am a twenty-two year old fresh grad, but at my company I am being asked to step up and take positions that ring of leadership…to be the Joshua to a Moses, and even to face challenges that, to me, seemed as daunting as those a younger Moses faced. As I learned about Moses’ faith, so mine was being tested, and in the process I was learning more about the God who was putting me to the test:
That he would equip me for every challenge he would throw at me.
That he would grow me despite my failures.
That he would not mind if I cried out and complained, so long as I ran to HIM first.
That he wanted me to rest in Him, and with Him I did not have to be afraid.
I think a lot about that thrice-repeated command which opens the book of Deuteronomy: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, for I am with you.” So often, we are afraid. I know I was. I still am, sometimes. But having been ministered to by the Life of Moses, it is clearer and clearer now that fear is not a necessity. The waters came, and the armies marched, and sin and serpents fell upon him and Israel, and they still made it into the Promised Land. Moses got to see the fulfillment of the promise, not just that the land would be delivered to his people, but that God would be with them every step of the way, despite the impossibilities that stood in his way. This fearsome, terrifying, sometimes ruthless God was also the gentle pair of everlasting arms that shepherded undeserving sheep and their–admittedly–imperfect shepherd through the wilderness into their inheritance. That loved the unlovable. That grew a spoiled prince turned murderer turned shepherd turned reluctant, excuse-spewing spokesperson into one of the greatest men history has ever known.
In closing, I repeat a point from the last lecture: “God’s faithfulness is manifested in every true believer.” What was promised to Moses and through Moses is still present and active today, because it was promised by the same God. A God I feel I understand a little better now. Not completely, never completely, but just a little bit more that I can stop being afraid of the journey this life will take me on. Because I know that God–the pillar of cloud, the column of fire, the Commander of Heaven’s armies–walks with me, and will be faithful to complete the good work he has begun. God is truly just, merciful, and above all faithful to His word.