A Glorified Stick


Driving down a main street in my town, I noticed a real life junk man. He had his spread there on the side of the road, in true Fred G. Sanford style, arranged in what seemed to me to be no particular order. Everything from old street signs to rusted antique farm equipment was right there on the side of the road, and I was truly amazed. I was amazed, first because I had never actually seen anything like this before. I really didn’t know that junk men, like Sanford and son actually existed. I also marveled at the fact that he actually had customers; several people browsing around the lot, one can only assume, trying to find treasure in the midst of trash. Who knew that all this was actually a real thing?! But it goes to show you that what others deem insignificant, and easily discarded, can be very valuable to someone else.

This fact is very encouraging to me, because I’m really nothing very significant. I’m from a small town. I pastor a small church. Haven’t really done anything particularly remarkable. I don’t really have any grand claims to fame, but none of that seemed to matter to God. He saw something in me that was valuable and usable for His plan.

Just like the time when God spoke to Moses out of the burning bush in Exodus chapter 3; Moses says to God, in so many words, “people aren’t going to believe you have a plan for me, and they aren’t going to listen to I have to say. (verse 1, Derek J. Murphy paraphrase)”

God, instead of acknowledging Moses’ doubts, and in place of confronting Moses’ insecurities, simply asked him a question. “What is that in your hand? (verse 2a, New American Standard Bible)”

Moses responds, “A staff (verse 2b).”

A staff was simply a wooden stick that had a carved hook at the top. It was used by shepherd to both discipline and wrangle sheep. It was nothing remarkable. It wasn’t some extravagant piece of equipment to revolutionize anything. It was just basically a glorified stick.

Look at what happened next:

Then (God) said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from it. But the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand and grasp it by its tail”— so he stretched out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand —  “that they may believe that the Lord, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you (verses 3-5, New American Standard Bible).” 

Like the staff in Moses’ hand, God wants to use you and I, if we make ourselves accessible. Moses didn’t have to go on a quest to find a powerful talisman to be used by God in a powerful way. God was able to do something amazing with Moses’ stick.

Not only that, when God told Moses to reach out his hand, the stick that became a snake, became a stick once again. This shows me that we don’t have to become a wonder, all we have to do is respond to His Hand. With that stick, Moses called down horrible plagues on the enemy nation. With that stick parted the massive sea. With that stick he got water to flow from a rock. With that stick he healed various diseases, all because the stick yielded itself to his hand.

God has a way of seeing value in what others overlook, or may even throw away. In God’s eyes, you will always have significance. You never have to become any overly impressive, if you just simply be whatever He is calling for. If God has extended His hand toward you, just yield to Him and your story will be more remarkable than you could ever imagine.

© 2016 Derek J. Murphy Enterprises, and I AM KINGDOM Publishing, All Rights Reserved.

If you enjoyed this essay, please feel free to share it with your family, friends and social media to help spread this encouragement. Thank you for reading!

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