Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"To assume or Not to assume?"
Acts 7:20-26 (New International Version)

20"At that time Moses was born, and he was no ordinary child. [A]For three months he was cared for in his father's house. 21When he was placed outside, Pharaoh's daughter took him and brought him up as her own son. 22Moses was educated in all the wisdom of the Egyptians and was powerful in speech and action.

23"When Moses was forty years old, he decided to visit his fellow Israelites. 24He saw one of them being mistreated by an Egyptian, so he went to his defense and avenged him by killing the Egyptian. 25Moses thought that his own people would realize that God was using him to rescue them, but they did not. 26The next day Moses came upon two Israelites who were fighting. He tried to reconcile them by saying, 'Men, you are brothers; why do you want to hurt each other?'"

I am not certain that we can truly understand this story if only read from the New Testament. At first read, there just seems to be something missing for me, perhaps it is the missing part about Moses floating in the basket amongst the reeds or the phrase he was powerful in speech. Since he decided to visit his fellow Israelites it seems he must know them quite well.

Moses was making an assumption of what his people would think, but he was wrong. Do we assume too much in our lives today? Making assumptions about other people is not a trait that I would want to pass on to my own children, but I know that I have. I am a strong willed individual and often share my opinions about situations and people when I probably should not. I need more education in the wisdom of God.

Arguments or disagreements with family, friends or co-workers are not good times unless we use them as a learning opportunity. The holiday season seems to be a time that families struggle with each other because of all the varying opinions we have about celebrating.

Oh come to my house, no – this year you have to travel or let’s have a small celebration without gifts this year. One of the best is – let’s go out to eat on Thanksgiving instead of preparing the entire meal. Don’t bring that last one up in our family, it won’t fly. We had to cook turkey and stuffing at home three days after my husbands double knee surgery, kids wouldn't have it any other way.

I believe I can safely say (or am I assuming) that most of us have had regrets about past assumptions. We should strive to learn from them by asking the important questions as Moses did – why do you want to hurt each other? They probably didn’t set out intending to hurt one another and neither do we, but it is a fact that despite all our good intentions, sometimes we do.

Our God of wonders is holy and just and He will teach us His ways. I have that faith and believe it - not merely assuming it of God. Go pick up the closest Bible to you and read any verse, in any chapter, in any book, in whatever version you choose and you will see that He WILL give you understanding and wisdom. When He knows you are ready, you be powerful in speech and action.

Dorothy Brucks
Aldersgate UMC
Nixa, MO.

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