“So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey and started back to Egypt. And he took the staff of God in his hand.” — Exodus 4:20 (NIV84)
It is likely that Moses had used that staff for over a decade. Staffs were common tools for shepherds. They used them to stabilize their walk on rough terrain. He certainly used it many times to convince a sheep or a goat about what direction it really should go. He may have even used it to defend himself against wild animals and bandits. It was an important tool in his arsenal. This is the same staff that God asked him, via the burning bush, to throw down on the ground and that became a snake. Moses would have known this to be his staff. But not any longer! When Moses finally surrendered to the will of God to use him in whatever way necessary, the staff became God’s. Read the verse for today again, Moses “took the staff of God in his hand.” The staff was no longer Moses’ — it was God’s.
What is true about Moses’ staff is also true about the gifts, talents, and treasures we have. They remain ours until we surrender ourselves and them to the will and service of God. Proper stewardship is not seen in giving God 10% of what is ours. It is, rather, giving God 100% of what is His, and His allowing us to keep 90% in a God-glorifying way to support our livelihoods. As a pastor, I believe that I have the ability to speak persuasively about faith-related things. My ability to speak became God’s ability when I surrendered who and what I am to His service. The same is true for the gifts God has given you. Have you surrendered what you have to Him? Is your “staff” now His? If not, it’s time to make it so.
May we allow God to claim ownership of the staffs we have in our lives.