These are crazy, trying times, like nothing most of us have ever seen before. I have been comforted lately reading of Moses and the Israelites and the crazy, trying times they endured. Theirs is a hard, hard story, an impossible story, yet I am encouraged and my faith is strengthened. God is not surprised or overwhelmed by our current circumstances. His word is alive and active and available to inform and fuel our spirits by His unending faithfulness, a faithfulness that allowed Moses to carry on. We can carry on because the arm of the Lord is not too short. (Numbers 11:23.)
Reading in Exodus 9-11 we see Moses and Aaron desperately trying to convince Pharoah to let the Israelites leave Egypt. They had become slaves under harsh Egyptian leadership and God heard their cries for deliverance. God prepared the Israelites for departure but there was something He wanted accomplished first…His glory. He hardened Pharoah’s heart…
“But because his heart was hard, Pharoah refused to let the people leave, just as the Lord had predicted through Moses.” Exodus 9:35
God hardened Pharoah’s heart and sent unfathomable plagues, so He could be glorified. “But I will make Pharoah’s heart stubborn, so I can multiply my miraculous and wonders in the land”…Exodus 7:3
If you believe in the God of scripture, then you have to know something, He will do whatever it takes to glorify Himself. This may sound selfish or hard to grasp…it is still something I am trying to understand and remember. However, the more I hang out in this sacred space…knowing it is ALL for His glory.. then it takes the pressure off. It allows me to let go. I don’t have to be seen because He shines brighter…I don’t have to figure it out because He has written the story…it allows me to celebrate others because He meets all my needs…”May He equip you with all you need to do His will…Heb. 13:21
God hardened Pharoah’s heart to show miracles and to have stories of His greatness…stories that would go before the Israelites and cause their enemies to bow in fear…stories that my grandmothers and Sunday school teachers and mother told me…stories that planted seeds of faith in my heart…
You see it’s always for His glory…the Israelites were ready to go..but God had bigger plans…He could have forced Pharoah to just say yes..but God had a river to turn into blood, frogs to send..a Red Sea to part…
It’s all for his glory…even the pain…even Corona…even death and illness and unemployment…there is a purpose..to make Him shine brighter so we can be drawn to that brightness…
So friends…we are in the middle of a hard, hard story, an impossible story that He wants to use…yep, you guessed it…for His glory. God can remove Corona at any time but He has chosen not to. Why? Because there are some things He wants to accomplish first. He may have another Red Sea to part…“so I can multiply my miraculous and wonders in the land”…Exodus 7:3
More folks are on their knees right now because of this crisis…what if when we got on our knees we had a new perspective, a perspective that Moses taught us…the perspective that this horrible awful is a catalyst to make God greater…that we can trust Him because He’s seen it all before and He never stops working…because He is not overwhelmed or afraid…because He actually wants to use us in the beautiful purpose of Him receiving all the glory…
Would that feel different?
Would that give anxiety a rest for a moment?
If we saw our suffering through the lense of His purpose?
Would it help?
What does He want to tell you the next time you are on your knees? Does He have Red Sea to part in your story? How can this horrible awful be used to draw you and others closer to the Kingdom?
“Who caused His glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses. Who divided the waters to make for Himself an everlasting name.” Isa. 63:12
It has always been just for Him.