“What is that in your hand?”

7/11/18 – Pastor Brian’s Blog –

Who would have thought that a plain old house key would have such an affect on my day? God woke me up this morning at 3 AM so by 3:30 AM I am in my office working on my sermon for this coming Sunday. Sunday after church, Judy and I are headed to family camp with our church and I have a long list of things I want to get done before I leave, so an early morning was a great start for me.

I had my day planned: I will work on my message for Sunday, I will work on my blog as I already know what I will write on, I will try and get caught up on some correspondence, get ready for my elder’s meeting this evening, meet with a friend to help him through a tough time and then hopefully spend some time working on my Sunday School lesson for this week.

Everything was going fine, until I decided to go home around 9 AM to take a shower and eat some breakfast. Judy is out of town so I was on my own for breakfast, so I found a couple of cold chicken legs, some cold beans smothered with ketchup and I was good to go. Then it happened. What I thought I had planned to do today, quickly changed as I walked out the front door of the parsonage.

Did I mention that Judy left me home alone and did I mentioned that I had been awake since 3 AM? Well I had every intention of coming back to my office and working on my to do list, until I realized, that I left my keys in the house, behind a locked door. Did I forget to mention that Judy took our extra key with her? My key ring not only had the key to the house, but had the key to my office as well.

I have no way to get back into the parsonage. I try to go through every window on the lower level: all locked. I try every door: locked. Have I mentioned yet that the temperature today is 89 with a feel of 109. I am sweating profusely, but I have to get into the house, so I can get into my office so that I can get to work on all the things I need to get done before we leave for family camp.

Unable to get into the house, I decide to go through the rollway to the basement, only to find that door is also locked. But it is not locked any more, now it is just broken! I thought I was golden until I realized the door that leads from the basement to the living room is also locked on the inside. I tried my best to get the door off. I even tried to dismantle the door, but to no avail. Did I mention that it is 89 degrees and I am sweating so much that I can’t even see!! I am thinking, “If only I had a key!”

I am trying to make a very long story short. Feeling like a failure, I decide to move from the parsonage to my office at church. Surely there, I will have better results.

I decided that I will pull the pins out of the door hinges but… I have no tools. I am thinking “If only I had a key!!” So I go to the church basement looking for tools only to find the storage room locked (which if I had my key I could open). I am able to get into the furnace room where I found a hammer. I found a butter knife and bottle opener in the kitche. So now I am ready to take on the task of taking my office door off the hinges.

I got the pins out but… the door would not come off. I wigged the door. I tugged on the door. Nothing. My last resort is to try and get the bottle opener pressed against the door latch, and hopefully keep it pressed long enough to be able to move it back far enough so that I can open the door. Finally success!!

One key, or lack thereof, had a very significant effect on my morning. Who would have guessed? I kept thinking, “If only I had a key, everything would have changed: I could stop sweating, I could work on my projects, I could turn on my air conditioner… if I only had my key.”

As I was trying to break in to houses and offices this morning, I kept thinking how seemingly insignificant a key is, but if that key was in my hand, how different things would have been. It is the same in our spiritual life! Often things that seem small or insignificant, are the things, if put into God’s hands, that can accomplish great things.

Who would have thought that a simple walking staff would have such an effect on one’s life? Then the LORD said to him (Moses), “What is that in your hand?” “A staff,” he replied. Exodus 4:2

A staff by itself is very limited, but a staff plus God? Who would have guessed? A staff with God can equal all the might of an Egyptian Pharaoh. It can defeat Egyptian priests and magicians. A staff with God, can consume the mightiest of serpents, it can turn water into blood, it can cause dust to become gnats and it can bring thunder, hail and fire down from heaven. A staff left alone doesn’t offer much but a staff with God can change the direction of the wind so that locusts will show up. A staff isn’t very impressive at all until God takes it, and it separates seas so that people can walk on dry ground, and then closes the sea up again so that the enemy will drown. It can bring drinking water from a stone. It can do pretty much of anything, when God controls it.

Can I ask you, “What is that in your hand?” What has God given you, that He wants to take and do great things with? Whatever God has given you, have you surrendered it entirely to Him, or are you keeping it for your own benefit, keeping it for a later time, or has it become so insignificant to you that you have placed it on a shelf?

It is very unlikely that God has put a staff in your hand. But I have no doubt that He has given you talents that He wants to use, or maybe He has given you money that he wants you to give back to Him, maybe He has given you children and He is asking you to give them up so that they can go into full time ministry. Maybe God has given you a spouse that has become more important to you than God. “What is that in your hand?”
Whatever you have in your hand, it can never accomplish what God intended for it, unless you give it to God. The Bible has story after story to inspire us, to remind us that little is much when it is given to God.

David had a sling and slayed a giant
Samson had a jawbone and killed a thousand men
Balaam’s donkey speaks and God’s people live
Rahab had a rope and saved the blood line of Christ
Elisha throws salt and the water is healed
Daniel prays and the lions shut their mouths
A woman gives her last mite, and we still talk about her today
A young boy shared one lunch and 1000’s are fed
Jesus had mud and a man sees
Peter speaks and 3000 are saved and baptized

“What is that in your hand?” Don’t discount it, it is not the size of the item, it is the size of the God you give the item to. And it isn’t just limited to men and women in the Bible, God is ready to do the same for you!

Who would have guessed that a house key or lack of one would have given me the idea for my blog for this week.