Rock Paper Scissors

By August 9, 2017 No Comments

“It’s night-night time Esther.”  I say to her as I lay her down OVER and OVER and OVER again.

She doesn’t seem to quite grasp that “it’s night-night time” actually means LAY DOWN, CLOSE YOUR EYES AND GO TO SLEEP FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.

We’re convinced that our little E has selective language knowledge, that when we are telling her something she absolutely does not want to do, she looks at us like “sorry guys…no speak English.”  (Which she doesn’t…but still.  Seems like a cheap excuse to me when I know if I offered her ice cream she’d be full on American to get it, with full knowledge of the webster’s dictionary)

One particular night I laid her down and said, “Night-night Esther, lay down.”

She laid down and popped right up.

She raised her eyebrows in a question and slowly did the sign for “eat”….her face one big question mark. (sign language is our mode of communication right now)

“No mam, lay down.”

She laid down.

Popped up.  Eyebrows up, question mark face, she emphatically did the sign for “drink”.

“No mam, lay down, it’s night-night time.”

Laid down.

Popped up.

Eye brows up, asking a big ole question, she subtly pointed to the door and leaned towards it…as if to say “let’s get out of here, what’cha think”.

Jesus take the wheel and give me grace.

“No ma’am Esther.  Mama is in charge. Lay down.”

She huffed and laid that sweet head down.

Popped up.

Signed “purse”.

You guys…she asked for her dang purse.

I laid my head down on the bed and found the depths of my mercy.

“No purse.  It’s time for night-night.  Lay down right now.”

She was not happy about this.  She slammed herself down.

Popped up.  She’s angry signing now.



All the signs for all the words she knows.

And over and over again I said NO MA’AM and laid her down.

She laid still for a minute and I felt the rise of victory.  I had won this battle.


She popped up.

“Itsy-Bitsy spider”….yes she has a sign for this.

I felt the laughter rising as I watched the amount of desperation in this stall tactic.  I also knew we were coming up on the bottom of her vocabulary if we were grasping for the itsy-bitsy spider straw.

“LAY DOWN.”  I said in my mama voice.

This was it.  I couldn’t think of one more sign that she knew.  I patted her back and a minute passed.

But then…my little chinese-one popped her whole body up and with VERY RAISED EYEBROWS SIGNED THIS NEXT QUESTION:


Let me explain.  She literally sat up, held her hand out and hit it with her fist three times, displaying that her choice for this round was paper.

I was astounded.  How on God’s green did she even know what this meant?

Laughter took control of me and I found myself playing a round.  She won.

Rock beat scissors.

Esther beat night-night time.

The bush was burning, a bright, hot red as Moses stood, bare feet on the dirt, undone by what He was seeing.

God’s glory, burning in that bush.  He had shown up and had something major to say to Moses.

He had his full attention.

God lays it all out for him.  He tells Moses He has seen the suffering and affliction of His people, the Israelites, at the hands of Pharaoh.  He has watched them dying under the weight of slavery and He is ready to step in…ready for it to end.

He has planned their rescue.  And He has chosen Moses to lead them to freedom.

“Come, I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring my people, the children of Israel, out of Egypt.”

And here we see Moses, trembling in his bare-feet, standing before the ACTUAL GLORY OF GOD that is burning but somehow not consuming the bush, try all of his stall tactics.

With raised eyebrows…begging the next questions, he begins his attempts to get out of this assignment that’s just been handed to him.

WHY ME??  I’m not qualified.
Moses answered God, “But why me? What makes you think that I could ever go to Pharaoh and lead the children of Israel out of Egypt?” (Exodus 3:11)

I don’t know enough.  I’m not equipped.
Then Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the People of Israel and I tell them, ‘The God of your fathers sent me to you’; and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ What do I tell them?”  (Exodus 3:13)

No one will believe that God could use me.
“Moses objected, “They won’t trust me. They won’t listen to a word I say. They’re going to say, ‘God? Appear to him? Hardly!’”  (Exodus 4:1)

This is not my calling.  I lack the ability to do what you’re asking me.
“Moses raised another objection to God: “Master, please, I don’t talk well. I’ve never been good with words, neither before nor after you spoke to me. I stutter and stammer.” (Exodus 4:10)

And with one last grand gesturing attempt:

Find someone else.  Surely there’s someone better.
“He said, “Oh, Master, please! Send somebody else!”  (Exodus 4:13)

Man.  We serve a kind God don’t we?

He shows up in our lives OBVIOUSLY, like in a burning bush, showing His undeniable power and gives us the gift of the very task that He has wired us for.

And what do we do?

We come up with a thousand excuses for why we can’t or won’t do it.

Stalling.  Redirecting attention.  Pitching better ideas to God than the one He has just landed on our hearts.

His kindness is shown in His answers to our back-and-forth questioning of HIS design.

He has an answer for our every. single. excuse, fear or justification for not doing what He has clearly called us to.

WHY ME??  I’m not qualified.

“I’ll be with you,” God said.

He is qualified and He is with us.

I don’t know enough.  I’m not equipped.

“God said to Moses, “I-AM-WHO-I-AM. Tell the People of Israel, ‘I-AM sent me to you.’”
God continued with Moses: “This is what you’re to say to the Israelites: ‘God, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob sent me to you.’ This has always been my name, and this is how I always will be known.” 

His name is the answer.  It’s all we need to know.  He defines it all.

No one will believe that God could use me.

So God said, “What’s that in your hand?”
“A staff.”
“Throw it on the ground.” He threw it. It became a snake; Moses jumped back—fast!
God said to Moses, “Reach out and grab it by the tail.” He reached out and grabbed it—and he was holding his staff again. “That’s so they will trust that Godappeared to you, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.”

then said, “Put your hand inside your shirt.” He slipped his hand under his shirt, then took it out. His hand had turned leprous, like snow.
He said, “Put your hand back under your shirt.” He did it, then took it back out—as healthy as before.

“So if they don’t trust you and aren’t convinced by the first sign, the second sign should do it.

But if it doesn’t, if even after these two signs they don’t trust you and listen to your message, take some water out of the Nile and pour it out on the dry land; the Nile water that you pour out will turn to blood when it hits the ground.”

It is God who will do things through us that only He could do.  His abilities in place of our inabilities will be what displays His power.

This is not my calling.  I lack the ability to do what you’re asking me.

“God said, “And who do you think made the human mouth? And who makes some mute, some deaf, some sighted, some blind? Isn’t it I, God? So, get going. I’ll be right there with you—with your mouth! I’ll be right there to teach you what to say.”

He made the very things He will use in us.  They are His.  He’s with us in every way.

Find someone else.  Surely there’s someone better.

“God got angry with Moses: “Don’t you have a brother, Aaron the Levite? He’s good with words, I know he is. He speaks very well. In fact, at this very moment he’s on his way to meet you. When he sees you he’s going to be glad. You’ll speak to him and tell him what to say. I’ll be right there with you as you speak and with him as he speaks, teaching you step by step. He will speak to the people for you. He’ll act as your mouth, but you’ll decide what comes out of it. Now take this staff in your hand; you’ll use it to do the signs.”

He will provide ever single thing we need to achieve His call on our lives.  He will teach us step by step.  We don’t have to be experts to start.  

Friend.  Are you playing rock paper scissors with God over something He’s clearly asking you to do?

Do you have a ton of other suggestions, trying to redirect the attention away from that very BIG, maybe hard thing that God has landed square in front of your heart?

Do you believe deep down the things that Moses did?
That you are inadequate, ill-equipped, a bumbling idiot, not the right person?

Take a deep breath of relief, because if these things were true, He would not have called you to it.

Is God asking you to close a door?  Walk away from a relationship? End a season?

Has he handed you a risky, larger-than-you task?

Has he called you to love your neighbor?  Start a movement?  Fight for justice?  Lead a family member to Jesus?

You are the one He has hand picked to do this very thing.  He has designed every part of you to be able to carry it, to do it, to have victory in it, to see it to the finish.

When you look at the life of Moses you see one thing:

His obedience DIRECTLY affected the freedom of someone else, a bunch of someone- elses actually.  An entire nation experienced freedom because He took those first
barefoot steps.

Your obedience to the thing that you’re staring at will DIRECTLY affect the lives of others.  That’s how Jesus works.

He calls us to do hard things and then uses those hard things to set others free.

Let’s throw in our towel and our long lists of excuses and just take a step towards the call on our lives.

He made you.  He’s with you.  He’s able.  He’s equipped.  He has the answers.

He has chosen you.

On purpose.

Let Jesus win this one.