In you and through you
At newsweek.washingtonpost.com's On Faith page, noted evangelist Luis Palua writes,
My most formative religious experience came at the age of 25, sitting in the back of a small seminary auditorium in Portland, Oregon, listening to a gruff British speaker behind a small wooden podium.The full text of his article is online here: A profound revelation in a seminary auditorium.
The invited guest, Major Ian Thomas, was the founder and general director of Torchbearers, a Christian organization based in England. His thick British accent and staccato delivery made it a challenge to follow his message. But when he waved his partially amputated finger at the crowd he clearly got my attention.
His message that winter morning was on Moses and the burning bush. It was a story I was familiar with (probably most of us are) but his point was revolutionizing.
The essence of his talk was that it took Moses forty years in the wilderness to realize that he was nothing. It wasn’t until he came across a burning bush – a bush made mostly of worthless, dried-up old sticks, completely engulfed in flames yet not consumed – that Moses finally “got it.” And very quickly, as Major Thomas described the story, I did too.
According to Major Thomas, God was trying to tell Moses, “I don’t need a pretty bush or an educated bush or an eloquent bush. Any old bush will do, as long as I (God) am in the bush.”
Thomas went on to share, “If God is going to use you, he is going to use you. It will not be you doing something for him, but God doing something in you and through you.”
but Christ who lives in me;
and the life I now live in the flesh
I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me.”