You know I’ve always wondered about how the children of Israel could grumble as they were led out of Egypt. The mysteries of the Passover, being “gifted” out of town by their Over Lords, truck loads of gold and jewelry, following the Pillar of Cloud, and Fire, the leadership of Moses, having the Tabernacle of the Presence right there, all of these incredible things. Seeing God provide,day after day after day, and yet they were blind to it.
That frightens me a bit, because “we” are “they” in a very real sense. We’ve been grafted into the Vine, and we are being led on a journey as well, but can still suffer from the same carnal ambush. Near sightedness. Not seeing past the tip of our noses for the “giants” that confront us.
I am leaving Egypt, you see. I am starting my journey through the desert, if I can borrow a metaphor. And I know that God is leading. No matter how I was released, I am now looking for the Pillar of Cloud, and Fire, to lead the way. And like them, I don’t really know where I am going, I am just wandering around, following. I’m not complaining, I don’t think, anyway. But it does often feel aimless, without purpose.
And I hope I get there in less than 40 years… no demands, Father, just an earnest wish, no, a plea.
It’s funny, I was thinking about Moses the other day. What the scene must have looked like from the outside looking in, as he was being formed.
Would we have recognized the incredible things God was doing there, in the heat, the desert, the deprivation, the humiliation of it all? I doubt it. We’d have seen a broken man, raising another mans sheep, while thinking about where he’d gone wrong. And yet not blaming this God he had identified with, but barely knew. He knew something on the spirit-level that made all of THIS ok. But still, he must have wondered on those long night watches, “If only I had not done X, then everything would have been good, I would have fulfilled my design in God…”
Did his face have deep lines in it from the sun, and from 40 years of contemplating all he had seen? Did he think about the bitter bondage of his people for 40 years? Did he try to shut it out of his mind, until tears ran down his face, and he lay spent on the ground? I think he must.
How God prepared this man to play this part. He shattered him, broke him, humbled him, took him to a desert to remove the glitter of Egypt from his eyes, satisfied him with simple desert food, and in the star-filled night, He wooed him. For 40 years.
In the midst of a desert, at just the right time, when he was humble, and the pretense of his beginnings had been sand blasted away, God came to him. Moses didn’t suddenly go seeking after Him. No, he sat quiet in the desert, content to be nothing, and only at that time had he become low enough that God could get his attention.
There are no short cuts, the journey doesn’t look like anything we’d choose, or ever even dream up. And when it happens, it will be all God’s doing.And He will get your attention.
Come, sit and enjoy the stars. Listen to the wind, and see the desert flowers. Rest, knowing that God made you, knows you, just as you are. And when the time is right, He will come to you.