When God called Moses to go to Pharaoh, Moses began making excuses. One thing he said was that he was “slow of speech.” Moses knew he wasn’t eloquent. God should definitely find someone else.
God’s response? “Who made your mouth?” Have you ever thought about who made your mouth? Who gave you the ability to speak in the first place? Moses obviously hadn’t thought about these questions.
Sometimes God gives us something to say and we allow the same fears Moses faced to bog us down, to keep us quiet. We ask ourselves “who am I to be telling that person anything at all?” We may be tempted to sound like Moses. To tell God that we are slow of speech… we’ll botch the whole thing. He’d better send someone more equipped for the job.
Paul understood this temptation. That’s why he asked for prayer in Ephesians 6:19-20. Paul knew he needed God’s supernatural empowering to do the job right.
But wait. Doesn’t James 1:19 say that we are supposed to be slow to speak? Doesn’t that get us off the hook? Not so fast. It doesn’t give us permission to be hesitant, it simply tells us to wait on God for wisdom and inspiration. Then we pray for boldness like Paul…and then we open our mouths with confidence and watch God use us for His glory.
It doesn’t get any better than that!
Ephesians 6:19-20 “and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”
James 1:19 “This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger.”