Thus the LORD saved Israel on that dayExodus 14:30
from the power of the Egyptians.
Have you ever been chased by someone? Or perhaps, afraid of someone, may be a big bully when you were younger? Ever felt trapped in a circumstance or situation that you couldn’t flee from? Perhaps financially, medically, or a sinful behavior?
When I read Exodus and all that Moses and the Israelites experienced, I typically visualize it as a story of historical events and miraculous interventions of God leading His people. I generally don’t reflect on it from the perspective of my own life. This morning I was listening to the reading from the old testament from Exodus 14:21-15:1. The first thing that stood out as I listened, which I don’t recall ever picking up on when I’ve read the story of Moses parting the Red Sea, was that the Israelites were literally fleeing for their lives and the first thing God does as the Egyptians are chasing them through the parted sea was clog their chariot wheels. Of course, God does more than just clog the wheels, He then has Moses release the water back into the sea right smack on top of the Egyptian army.
Aren’t we just like the Israelites who were oppressed by Pharoah when we feel trapped in a situation, bullied or abused?
I have never really reflected on this passage in regards to my own personal moments of oppression, those moments I was fleeing or under the strong hold of something or someone. My guided reflection took me to that space where I couldn’t breathe, that moment when another had power over me. I wanted to flee but I couldn’t. I wanted freedom but I felt constrained. As I imagined being set free, I began to converse with God asking Him to help me by loosening the chains, clogging the wheels of my oppressor. The interesting other half of my story is that God flat out told me later during reflective adoration that I had to do my part too.
You see, He wants us to be free. He wants to come to our aid, to release the weight of the water right on to whatever is trapping us, whatever is binding us. He wants to cut those chains. But it requires us to do our part first. We have to truly surrender our will to Him, our fears, our hurts, our control. No holding back any of it. Handing it all over to Him, laying it at the foot of that cross which speaks an epic love story to our hearts.
God saved the Israelites by crushing the Egyptian army. He had plans for His people. He loved each of them. They were His beloved children. And we are no less worthy of that same rescue.
Ask yourself today, what is holding me back from surrendering, trusting God to part the seas and rescue me from the oppression present in my life?
Lord, today I come to You asking You to free me from the power that is holding me captive, the bondage that is keeping me from the peace and joy that You offer me as Your beloved child. Lord help me to surrender all to You at the foot of the cross so that I can receive freedom from Your loving hands. This I pray in Your beloved name. Amen