Expectation Breakers: Moses

In “Expectation Breakers: Don’t Live by Man’s Expectations,” we discovered that ONLY God can satisfy in a world where expectations made and unfulfilled are common. Now, we will look at Moses, who appeared one thing according to man’s expectations, but was able to do more, and go higher, because God chose him… because God knew the perfect expectations to place upon him.

“‘For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’ says the Lord, ‘plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’”—Jeremiah 29:11 (AMP)

“But Jesus looked at them and said to them, ‘With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.’”—Matthew 19:26 (NKJV)


Moses was born of the tribe of Levi, yet, his birth came at a turbulent time.

The children of Israel—all the tribes—were enslaved to the Egyptians. Further, due to the people flourishing even in the midst of their suffering, the Egyptian Pharaoh grew to fear the Israelites. Out of his fear, Pharaoh ordered the Hebrew midwives to cast the male Israelite infants into the river. Yet, the midwives feared God and claimed that the Israelite women were giving birth before they could arrive. So Pharaoh commanded ALL his people to cast any male Israelite infant into the river.

Now, if we consider the probable expectations that both the Egyptians and the Israelites may have had of Moses, they would not have been very high. After all, he was born into a slave culture AND among those commanded to be killed. That is not exactly a bright future in the natural… but God does not call the qualified, he qualifies the called. (Curt Landry)

Moses’ mother hid him for three months, and when she could no longer conceal him—and would therefore be forced to cast him into the river by those who ruled over them—she decided to take action. She—in what is somewhat an ironic move given the Egyptians wanted the male Israelite infants thrown into the river—placed Moses in a waterproofed basket… and he was saved by God.

His sister, Miriam, followed his basket all the way to where Pharaoh’s family lived and saw that Pharaoh’s own daughter took the child for herself, instead of seeing him destroyed. Yet, Pharaoh’s daughter had no way to nurse Moses, so Miriam stepped forward and suggested her mother—Moses’ own mother—to nurse and care for him until he was weaned, at which time Moses would become Pharaoh’s daughter’s son (see Exodus 2:10).

Already in this, Moses was raised above his station and all prior expectations… but it was only the beginning, despite issues along the way.

When Moses, grown and trying to help his people, made a disastrous choice, he ran. He ran into the desert and eventually made his way to Midian.

There he took a wife, began shepherding, and eventually, met God in the form of a burning bush. 

Moses’ expectations for himself were much lower and of lesser impact than those God placed before him there. For God desired to use him to fulfill a prophetic word He had given to Abraham—that his descendants would be enslaved for four-hundred years, but then freed. Yet, Moses could not get past the way he saw himself—what his man-made expectations were. 

He tried to tell God ALL the reasons he believed why he was not qualified. He told God of his issues with speech, his doubt that the children of Israel would listen to him, and his desire for another to do that which God was asking of him… yet, even in God’s anger at Moses, He blessed him, led him, and gave Moses all the words, direction, and wisdom he would need.

“So the Lord said to him, ‘Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes the mute, the deaf, the seeing, or the blind? Have not I, the Lord? Now therefore, go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say.’”—Exodus 4:11-12

So, Moses went from Midian to Egypt with his family and that is when the expectations of man truly began to break.

Few outside his people believed in Moses, yet, he believed in God and did that which he was asked to do—with the help of his brother, Aaron.

Sign after sign God sent when the new Pharaoh would not allow God’s people to go and worship Him. Yet, Pharaoh’s heart did not turn. So, God sent one last sign to rend the heart of Pharaoh… the death of the firstborn. In this, God gave Moses the key to protect His people, having them take an unblemished male lamb of its first year and place its blood upon the doorposts of their houses so that death would pass over—the first Passover. However, Pharaoh and many of his people did not listen to this command from God, and they, their families and livestock, awoke to find every firstborn—of man and animal—dead… and, for a time, this softened the heart of Pharaoh.

In all these signs, God used Moses and his brother Aaron in powerful ways, and neither met the expectations of man. For they obeyed the Lord who put His own perfect expectations upon them… expectations that, through His mighty power, were fulfilled. Yet, even ten miraculous signs were not the end of what Moses would experience.

Moses was granted the privilege by God to lead His people out of Egypt, and upon reaching the sea with Pharaoh’s army behind, God exceeded everyone’s expectations. He used Moses to part the sea before His people—which God then sealed over the Egyptian army behind them.

Still, even that was nothing compared to how God would use Moses in the days to come.

Moses was given the wisdom to care for God’s people. He, through God’s power, made bitter water sweet and brought water forth from a rock. God gave to Moses the how, when, and quantity of the manna/bread that He would send the people to gather and eat. In all this, God blessed Moses and the children of Israel with many signs and wonders; with enough food and water, and even victories against the enemies they met… leading them and caring for them in all things.

Yet, the blessing and expectation-breaking to come would send out ripples of holiness and Heaven still felt to this day. For Moses was called up to the top of Mount Sinai, and there, not only spoke with God, but received from Him the two tablets of the Testimony, the Ten Commandments—the base of our knowledge of right from wrong and the Lord’s heart.

To go from being birthed into slavery and intended death, to living as a royal in Pharaoh’s household, to becoming a shepherd, then to shepherd the Lord’s people out of Egypt where he was given God’s testimony of His covenant instruction for His people… is an amazing journey! The expectations anyone on earth at the time of Moses’ birth might have had about his life were ALL wrong. He went from infant slave to a man chosen of God to not only lead His people, but to have direct—face to face—relationship and fellowship with God.

So, while Moses would go on many more years in the desert leading God’s people, experiencing His miracles, and yet never leading the people into the Promised Land… Moses is still one of the most prominent Expectation Breakers of the Word. God, despite Moses having weaknesses as well as strengths, did not keep Moses from Himself. He used Moses to the end of his days and blessed the work of his hands.

“And Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, ‘Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel: “You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings and brought you to Myself. Now therefore, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be a special treasure to Me above all people; for all the earth is Mine. And you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.”…’”—Exodus 19:3-6

Like Moses, we were born into a world where expectations are placed upon us like a blanket. Yet, God can, and does, use people the world does not expect. He sees us through love-filled eyes, and His expectations are the only ones which matter.

“God does not call the qualified, He qualifies the called.”—Curt Landry

In the end, Moses made some big mistakes before and even after he answered his call, yet, God used him… because it was God, not Moses, who qualified Moses.

God can use ALL of us, no matter what mistakes we have made. We are given the ability to set down our iniquities and the expectations of man and pick up God’s redemption, will, direction, and expectations—which are perfectly made for each and every one of us.

We, like Moses, can be Expectation Breakers!