Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. Exodus 14:15
Exodus 14 finds the Israelites freshly freed and on their first little bit of their journey through the wilderness. Pharaoh realizes what he is losing in setting the Israelites free and decides to come after them. And wouldn’t you know it, they start to worry and question and blame Moses for freeing them! (A sign of things to come?)
They are afraid and so they begin to doubt. And as Moses is trying to comfort and encourage the people, God says something very interesting to Moses:
“Why are you crying out to me?”
Now there is something you never want to hear in a crisis! God asking, “Why bring me into this? What are you crying about?”
Sometimes I’ve felt that way. Sometimes I’ve felt like all I wanted from God was some help, some direction and what I get in response feels more like this.
But look at what else God says here:
“Tell the Israelites to get moving.”
God isn’t asking why he is being involved in their problem because he doesn’t care, but because they already have been given direction. They have already been told that God will lead them out and that they are going to the Promised Land. But the second they see trouble coming they stop doing what God has called them to and start crying out, complaining, blaming and regretting their steps of faith.
Actually, in light of this, God’s response is remarkably kind. It must have been frustrating for him to be in the process of delivering them and all they can focus on is the one thing that looks bad, that appears to be a problem.
Forget all the plagues and the miracle of the Passover! Forget the fact that they are now already out and on their way, a free people! Forget about the constant display of God’s power they have been witnessing! What about those who are chasing us now?!
Isn’t this just like us? Well, it’s just like me, I know. I can be so afraid of the possible failures and difficulties that I forget the deliverance that came just moments ago. Or that is still coming right now!
I am so very guilty of this kind of vision. Seeing only the failure and possible pitfalls and ignoring the victories that surround me. Crying out to God to rescue me when he is rescuing me and has already given me the direction I need.
Father, may you grant me the courage to not fall apart when I fear that things around me are. May I stick to the plan you have given and trust you to make a way. May I see that your face is shining on me, that you are gracious to me, and that you have given me peace.