While reading about the Hebrews’ experience at the Red Sea, I was reminded that there was a slight delay in their deliverance. The Red Sea could have opened up as they were approaching and they could have continued on through without even a stop. Or it could have opened up as they stopped there and before they realized what a dilemma they were in with the Egyptian army approaching and no way of escape. Or better yet, quicksand could have miraculously developed under the feet of the Egyptian army, and the Hebrews could have spent a week at the beach celebrating.
Do you ever wonder why God chooses to delay giving us a solution to problems, especially when the problems pose a serious danger to life … or job … or freedom?
Actually, sometimes I wonder why He helps us at all! Looking at the Hebrews at that time, they had a reputation of grumbling during their trip across the desert, in spite of all the miraculous signs God gave them. They even contemplated going back to the slavery they left!
But are we, that is the world, any different? We waste precious resources as some starve. We threaten other nations with weapons that could destroy the entire earth. We react to murder with more violence. We’re even so unhappy with the sex God gave us to not only disfigure ourselves but teach our children that this is not only OK but may even be desirable for them.
What’s to become of us? Why should God ever help?
Only the God who loves us more than we can imagine can make any sense of it all. Maybe the Hebrews needed that delay so that they realized their entire lives depended on God and that only He is truly in control. Maybe, when I see all that seems so wrong in this world, I’m just as impatient as the Hebrews.
“God rescue us! Take us home!” I think sometimes. So do many others.
But then I remember those who aren’t yet ready to go home. They see only the problems, like the Hebrews saw only the Egyptians. We know God is there for us. They need to know that, too.
Moses told the people “Stand by and see the salvation of the LORD which He will accomplish for you today … the LORD will fight for you while you keep silent.” (Exodus 14:13) In other words, just stand still and let God work. He will. We know He will. We just have to stand and silence our worries. “Stand” and “keep silent”. That’s hard work sometimes when evil seems to be at our back and shouting at us. We want to shout back. But God will fight for us just as he fought for the Hebrews. Stand … and keep silent.