Today’s Reading: Ex. 13:7 – 15:19
God knows us too well. How do I know it? Here is the verse – “When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “if they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt”. Yeah, when we see difficulties or oppositions when we do something new, we tend to “oh, boy, let’s stop because this is too difficult; let’s maintain our status quo”. When you do something new, it is difficult and it is not comfortable, but the result is so much more than just “maintaining status quo”.
I love the fact that God then put the Israelite between the Red Sea and the pursuing Egyptian army! I mean, no way out! I don’t know how many people know about this Chinese old proverb, but whenever we try to do something with everything we got, we say “let’s settle ourselves at the riverside – so if the battle goes bad, we can’t run away, but must fight until we die” — it is called “Bae-Soo-Jin” strategy, in Korean. Since we die in the river if we run, we got no choice but fight to live. I almost feel like that when I saw the Israelites before the Red Sea.
Of course the Israelites complain – I mean, what do we do when we follow God’s lead and it does not work the way “we” want? We tend to say “God, are you kidding me? I followed you and I am in trouble!” My automatic response to God on such situation is – “God, you put me in this trouble, so please get me out of this trouble and I beg you not to take too long to get back to me because I am really bad at being patient”. I hope your response is better than mine!
Moses then said “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you Today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will right for you; you need only to be still.” — Yes, our favourite statement – “Do not be afraid”! Why? We tend to react so bad when we get scared. The only thing we have to do is “stand firm and see how God fights for us”! Isn’t that great? So much better than the above Chinese proverb – we don’t even have to fight because God will fight for us!
I love God’s response to the Israelite — “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on”! Don’t you love it? So if you feel like crying out to God “what are you doing to me in my life”, remember God’s response – “why are you crying out to me? move on or follow me!”
It’s been a rough ride for me during this week at work. I could not figure out why it was so hard until this morning – I did not acknowledge God in my office because I was so distracted by my own tunnel vision on work. I need to “stand firm” and “be still” so that “God will fight for me”. I “will not cry out” but “move on” with his lead based on his Word. What about you? Are you standing firm today? Are you following God with faithfulness that He will deliver you today? If not, this is a good chance for you to have a “conversation” (a.k.a prayer) with God — you still got 13 hours before today is over!
After that conversation, join me in singing along with the Israelites today – “The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God and I will exalt him.”