One day in high school I was late for a class and as I stumbled into the room I apologized to the teacher. He looked at me as if to say an explanation was in order. Jokingly, I said that I was at the mall and there was a power failure and I’ve been stuck on the escalator. Perhaps because he couldn’t believe that I would say such a thing, or because it was such a lame joke, he let it pass.
Scripture is full of lame excuses. Jeremiah said he is only a boy. Moses said that his brother would be a better leader because he can talk better. David said he cannot fit into the armor. Jonah ran away.
Who could blame the prophets and other leaders for not wanting to take on the role that God chose them for? After all, a prophet was usually asked to deliver a message that the people didn’t want to hear. Oh, for a while things might go well, but eventually the prophet would have to call on the people to repent and that message is never well received. Even Jesus, when he first proclaims a prophetic purpose to his life is met with anger and a mob that wanted to kill him (long before Pilate ever heard of him).
Of course running away or thinking up excuses eventually proves futile. Thankfully, God is patient and forgives the initial response to flee. Prophets must be prophets, kings must be kings, and Jesus must be the Christ. And we, what must we do as the Body of Christ? We must accept God’s mission for us to proclaim, by word and deed, the love of God. No more lame excuses. If the escalator gets stuck, we walk. If the road gets tough, we keep on truckin’. No more excuses.