Monday, November 17, 2014

(Don't) Leave Us Alone 11/17/2014 (rp)

"Is this not the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, ' Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians'? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness." Exodus 14:12

After 430 years of crying out to God for relief from the brutality and imprisonment of slavery, in His own time and in His own way through His chosen agency, God responded by freeing His people from Pharaoh's grip. As it would happen, Pharaoh experienced a bit of a change of mind and famously came after them. It was in the midst of this perceived threat (and I say perceived because God was with them) that the Hebrews apparently changed their minds and decided that slavery was not so bad after all.

Human nature can be both amazingly wonderful and tragically flawed. We have the strength, intelligence and fortitude to go from building the pyramids to going to the moon, but often times lack simple patience and faith. How could it be that the people, after crying out to God for so long, lose sight of His chosen deliverer, the miracle of the plagues (particularly the last one), be allowed to leave with the plunder of all of Egypt and think that all estimated two million of them (or even one of them for that matter) would be destroyed in the midst of God's hand? It is fascinating that not only do we want to be delivered from our negative circumstances, but that we want it done in a particular time frame, by particular means, in a particular manner. Otherwise we throw up our hands and seek our own means or reconcile ourselves to our situations. In other words, we sometimes would rather enjoy the "luxuries" of slavery than the "inconveniences" of freedom.

Beloved, faith is believing and trusting God. It means that when we pray for deliverance, we leave the who, what, why and where to Him. And if we happen to look out the window and see a threat coming our way, let us look away from that threat and look back at God. He is in control and we are not. And if the day would ever come when we could determine the conditions and features of our own deliverance by dictating them to Him, who then would be God?

Consider this wise piece of advice: "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths" Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV).



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