First let me say that I am very thankful for the opportunity to contribute to this site. I was a little hesitant at first to agree, it is one thing to preach a sermon on a Sunday night, it is something completely different to write an entire series to be posted for literally the entire world to see. Nevertheless, I am very happy to do it, and I am truly grateful to my father for his faithfulness to this site and to the Word.
Many abilities are praised nowadays as being special… almost superhuman. Singers and dancers, athletes and actors, they are all put on a pedestal. They are seen as greater people because of certain talents that they have. Even in our churches this has taken place. People are idolized for certain abilities that they posses. People long to sing like the person that sang in church on Sunday morning. They wish they could speak as gracefully as the guest speaker that came to visit. But what does the Bible have to say about abilities? What abilities is God looking for in the life of His people?
Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. (Isaiah 6:8)
And Mordecai told him of all that had happened unto him, and of the sum of the money that Haman had promised to pay to the king’s treasuries for the Jews, to destroy them. Also he gave him the copy of the writing of the decree that was given at Shushan to destroy them, to shew it unto Esther, and to declare it unto her, and to charge her that she should go in unto the king, to make supplication unto him, and to make request before him for her people. And Hatach came and told Esther the words of Mordecai. Again Esther spake unto Hatach, and gave him commandment unto Mordecai; All the king’s servants, and the people of the king’s provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days. And they told to Mordecai Esther’s words. Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king’s house, more than all the Jews. For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this? (Esther 4:7-14)
And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none. (Ezekiel 22:30)
The Ability of Availability
The first ability that God is looking for is availability. God is looking for people that will be willing to make themselves available to His use. Often we have the idea that in order to be used of God we have to have certain special abilities or skills, but as we will see more important to God than any talents that we have is our willingness to be used by Him.
In the first verse, we have a glimpse at a vision that Isaiah was given by God. Isaiah was in Heaven standing before the Lord Jesus sitting on His throne. As Isaiah was watching the angels worshipping Christ, the Lord spoke. He had a vision that he wanted carried to His people Israel, but He needed a messenger to bring it to them. Christ asked the question that is still being asked to us today: Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Notice that He did not say, Who is the most eloquent speaker that I have created? or Who is the most charismatic leader on the earth? The Lord only presented one qualification: Who will go for us? He was not looking for the most graceful or the most charming, Christ was only looking for one that would be willing to go. (I Corinthians 1:25-29)
The Importance of Availability
The second story that we read about is the story of the life of Queen Esther. Esther was a Jew that had been chosen to be queen by a pagan king during a beauty pageant of sorts. Out of all of the women in the kingdom, King Ahasuerus chose this woman, who happened to believe in God, to be the queen. At this time a wicked man named Haman hated the Jews and one Jew in particular, Mordecai, Esther’s cousin. Because of his deep hatred for the Jews, he tricked the king into signing a decree allowing him to hang all of the Jews. When Esther found out that her cousin had started mourning she sent to find out why and this is where our passage picks up.
Mordecai wanted Esther to go before the king and to petition on behalf of the Jews. Esther, however, was hesitant to do this because in that time you only went before the king when he called you. If the king did not call you and you went into his court, you could be killed, unless he raised his golden scepter to spare your life. The problem was that Esther did not make herself available to God until she understood the importance of availability.
The question that Mordecai asked Esther was one that we need to ask ourselves: Who knows if you were placed here for such a time as this? In our daily lives: at the store, in the bank, at the gas station we have the ability to speak to people that others may never speak to about the gospel. The question then that we must ask ourselves every day is, Who knows if I was placed here for such a time as this. You are the only Jesus that some will ever see. Will you make yourself available to God to be used for His glory and for the good of others?
The Dangers of Unavailability
In the final verse of our reading we see the dangers of being unavailable. In Ezekiel’s time the people of Israel were living in open sin and rebellion against God. God was seeking for a person that would make himself an intercessor for the nation. He was looking for someone to be available to be used, but He found no one. Because of this lack of availability on the part of the people of Israel, the nation was destroyed, sent into captivity. We also see in the story of Esther that Mordecai told her that if she was not willing to make herself available to God, that she and her family would be destroyed. You can make yourself available to God, and your availability to Him may be the difference in the life of your family or your nation, and it definitely will be the difference in your life.
Are you willing to make yourself available to God?
Is your answer the same as Isaiah’s, Here am I send me, or do you make excuses like I just can’t do it.
Even If you don’t know what your abilities are, or how you can best serve God, just pray and tell Him that no matter what He has for you you are available to be used of Him.