WHEN GOD CHOOSES A LEADER
Great men, great leaders,great heroes aren’t born overnight.
I am big fan of Presidential history. Many of you who know me well can verify
this. I can tell you a lot about nearly every 20th century President that has
come down the pike.
My favorite President was Harry S Truman.
For the first half of his life, he was a virtual unknown. He was a failed
farmer. A failed businessman. Aside from service during World War II, he rarely
stepped out of his part of Missouri.
But years later, he would become the 33rd President of the United States during
some of the most interesting times of American history.
But don’t think those years as an unknown were wasted. His failures gave him
experience to understand and empathize with those who were less fortunate. He
knew what the small businessman and farmer wanted and needed from Washington
and he worked hard to that end once he occupied the Oval Office.
No, this is not going to be about Harry Truman.
But I use his life to make a point. There were a variety of experiences in
Truman’s life that ultimately prepared him for the task he was destined to
When one looks through the Scripture, that becomes evidently clear in the lives
of great Biblical heroes.
The hero I choose to hold up as an example of this is Moses. I want us to look
at his life from the time he was born until the time he stood before Pharaoh
and said "Let my people go". And I want to point out several things about what
God did with Moses that He does with us as well.
FROM BIRTH, GOD PUT PEOPLE IN MOSES LIFE.
With God, there are no accidents. It was no accident that there were two
midwives, Shiphrah and Puah that said from the beginning that they would not
kill the Hebrew baby boys even though Pharaoh decreed it and was capable of
putting them to death. If they had not been there, Moses would have died even
before he had ever been named.
It was no accident that after Pharaoh decreed that all Hebrew baby boys be
thrown into the Nile river to drown and Jochebed, his mother, made an ark of
bulrushes for him to float in, that the daughter of Pharaoh would be bathing
nearby and find the baby and fall in love with him and take him to the palace
It was no accident that after killing an Egyptian who was abusing an Israelite
and fleeing the country for fear of his life, that Moses would become
acquainted with a man named Jethro and marry one of his daughters. And it was
no accident that while Moses was tending to Jethro’s sheep that he would
encounter God speaking from the burning bush telling him that his appointed
task was to lead the Children of Israel out of slavery.
It was no accident.
You see, with God there are never any accidents.
Society today likes to say that certain events occur just by "coincidence".
I decided a long time ago that I don’t believe in "coincidence". God allows
things to happen and puts things in order because He has plans for our lives as
Christians. Sometimes those plans aren’t realized because of our own pride and
But there are no accidents.
It was not an accident that Ananias should be in the same general area as Saul
when the great persecutor of Christians encountered Jesus in a blinding light.
It was no accident that after Ananias healed him, Saul would enter a life of
Christian service and later become known as the Apostle Paul.
It was no accident.
It was no accident that the Ethiopian eunuch was riding in a chariot and was
literally overtaken by an itinerant evangelist named Philip who was in that
area simply because that’s where God told him to go. It was no accident that
Philip would share the Gospel with him and he would find a relationship with
It was no accident.
It was no accident that a former baseball player turned evangelist named Billy
Sunday would be preaching at a crusade and in the back would wander a young
teenager named Mordecai Ham who would hear the Gospel message, get saved, and
eventually become a great evangelist himself.
It was no accident that a troubled teenager named Billy Graham would hear
Mordecai Ham preach and give his heart and life to Jesus and grow up to become
perhaps the most influential evangelist of modern history.
It was no accident.
It was no accident that many years ago, this church felt led to enter into a
building program. It was no accident that the right leaders were in place as
these plans begin to unfold. It was no accident that in spite of many who felt
the church was being irresponsible in undertaking this, that the majority of
the body felt lead to move on in faith.
It was no accident.
It was no accident that a precious woman named Mary Grace Angel would become a
part of this church’s fellowship and bless us with her attitude and service for
a lot of years. It was no accident that with each paycheck, she felt led to
save because someday she wanted to benefit the body of Christ here in Lillian.
It was no accident that when she died and her will was probated, her simple
obedience would allow the church to pay off a 30 year loan after only having it
for about a year and a half.
It was no accident.
And I can tell you right now that the same is true for you. Regardless of your
circumstances, regardless of how many blessings you are receiving or whether
your life seems dark and gloomy, you are not there by accident. You are in that
position because God is lining something up for you and for His Kingdom. He is
either setting things up so that you can use the blessings you’ve received to
glorify Him or He is desperately trying to call you out of the dark
circumstances you are in because of your own disobedience.
But you are not there by accident.
And neither was Moses.
FURTHER, MANY TIMES, GOD PUTS US THROUGH A WAITING PERIOD.
We are impatient people. I surrendered to the ministry when I was 18 years old
and right then and there, wanted a church to pastor. But God wasn’t ready for
me. He took me through 12 years of youth ministry to prepare me for what was to
God wants to bless us. He wants to use us. He has plans for us to be His
insturments. But many times, we have to wait.
Moses waited 120 years before the rains that God had told him would come finally
Abraham was promised a son 25 years before Isaac finally arrived.
Joseph waited 14 years in prison before God used him to guide Egypt through a
John Maxwell says "God prepares leaders in a crock-pot, not in a microwave
oven." Sometimes we have to simmer and allow God’s Word and the lessons He
wants to teach us soak into our very being before He gives us what we need to
I remember wanting a wife.
I was 30 years old, never been married, and constantly looking. I didn’t just
want a wife for myself. I firmly believed that God wanted me to have a partner
So I was also upset at Him because He hadn’t given me one yet.
And as I said, I was constantly looking.
I was going to a church that was 95% senior adults so if a young 20 or 30
something single woman walked in as a visitor, it was almost a sure thing that
the first minister they would meet would be the youth minister.
I mean, for a while there, I chased anything wearing a skirt. I chased some
girls I had no business chasing but I figured "I can change them".
Finally, I went on a retreat at Falls Creek Camp in Oklahoma. While there, God
and I had some serious talks and I finally said "God, you know what? I get you
now. I have been making finding a woman my priority when all along, I should
have been putting you at first place. So, from now on, God, here’s where it’s
at. I don’t care if I stay single the rest of my life as long as you let me
And God said "Well, you do get it!"
And just a short year later, I met the woman who was to become my wife.
See, sometimes God makes us wait because we’re simply not ready yet. We’re too
What are you waiting on? A new job? A new place to live? A restored
And God says, "Don’t worry, I have big plans for you. It may not be exactly what
you are asking for but because I am the Lord God Almighty, it will be the very
Moses had to wait forty years in the desert before God truly used him. That was
his time of education. That was his time of preparedness.
And if you’re a believer, now may be your time of preparedness.
AND FINALLY, GOD GIVES YOU AN EMOTIONAL INVESTMENT IN WHAT HE’S CALLING YOU TO
Moses became so incensed with the treatment of the Children of Israel by the
Egyptians that it even drove him to murder.
Now, I’m not advocating that.
But what I do want to point out is that Moses was passionate about his people.
And God took that passion and harnessed it to use it for a great work. A work
that would save a nation and impact the world.
And God gives us passions. The problem sometimes is we don’t see how they can be
used in service to God. I mean, if our passion isn’t to preach or sing, then it
can’t be used, right?
I remember a man who spoke at my church when I was a child. His name was Ron
Banks. When he was a kid, he had a passion to be a pilot. He loved airplanes
and he loved to fly. Then he felt called into ministry. How could God use
Ron became a pilot for Mission Aviation Fellowship. They go into foreign
countries and aid missionaries in difficult times. God used Ron’s passion.
There was once a pastor in Texarkana, Arkansas who had a passion for politics
and the political process. But he also knew that God had called him into
ministry. How could God possibly use him in politics?
Mike Huckabee is now the governor of Arkansas and has spoken out for Jesus in
areas where he never could have spoken as a preacher.
Milton Whitehurst was a man I knew in Dallas. He loved cars but he felt called
to serve God. How could he use that talent? He was known for a long time for
fixing preachers cars for minimal prices. Sometimes, he would even negotiate it
down to nothing.
Lily Morris felt called to be a missionary but for a long time, the opportunity
never came. Then God did use her and she has impacted the lives of young girls
by teaching them about missions and how it is part of the Great Commission. And
on top of that, He gave her the opportunity to go overseas for short term
Harry Hamilton loves to talk about Jesus but loves his job as well. And weekly
if not daily, he shares Jesus with his co-workers and they know he loves the
Lord and he has made a difference in their lives.
Many of you have passions but when God calls you to serve, you say "I don’t know
what I can do?"
What are you passionate about? God wants to use it.
You see, God had plans for Moses. He put the right people in his life. He set up
the right circumstances to prepare him. He gave him passions for certain
things. And when the time was right, Moses was obedient.
God has plans for you. He has put the right people in your life. He has set up
the right circumstances to prepare you. He has given you a passion for certain
And when the time is right, be obedient and see what God does!
And maybe that time is now!