Exodus 13:17-14:14 – The Wilderness Journey Begins

Read Exodus 13;17-14:14

When God is your GPS, you follow where he leads. Even if it means he’s taking you way out of the way. When our GPS (we use Waze app) tells us to go out of our way, it’s to protect us from some long delay or unforeseen road blockage down the road we wouldn’t see otherwise. God had his reason to protect his people from the shortcut, too.

The Israelites were finally on their way. God continued to show up to protect and lead the way. The pillars of cloud and fire, by day and by night, were there to remind them of God’s presence. When I’m feeling a little lost and unsure of myself, I would sure love to look up and see a pillar of cloud or fire showing me the way. But we do have God close by, we don’t need a billow of smoke to remind us of that.

I loved that Moses had the bones of Joseph as had been promised. Joseph had told his family that God would come to bring them home. God did, indeed, and Joseph’s remains are making the trek back “home” too. This loop is now closed as well, many generations later.

Did it surprise you that Pharaoh changed his mind again? God is writing a story full of excitement and adventure. Some might say God is really manipulating the whole situation. But his intentions are to give himself glory. I can’t think of any better reason. We should glorify God in all we say and do.

When the Israelites saw Pharaoh and his army approaching they were afraid. What other emotions did you see? Anger. Doubt. They were certainly not showing gratitude for being free. I’m sure they also felt trapped. They were on the shores of the river with no place to go.

Didn’t you love what Moses said to them? “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. 14 The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.” I’m sure being calm was the furthest thing from their minds. Moses trusted God. The Israelites hadn’t gotten that memo yet.

Have you known people like this? Perhaps you see yourself. One who fears too much to trust God. One who lets circumstances cloud our judgment. The Lord does fight for us. Still today. He isn’t done wanting to get the glory. We should be doing all we can to give him glory as we see him mending us in our broken places.

If you haven’t seen God working in your life for a while, take time today to focus in. You’ll find God. He is everywhere. He is preparing and providing exactly what we need in his time. We might want to rush things along, we might let doubt creep in, we might lose sight of the wonder and majesty of God. Take time today to remember and be thankful.

Let’s pray. Lord, I thank you for how you are moving in my life. Forgive me when I forget to give you the glory. I’m feeling a little overwhelmed right now with all the tasks that fill my day. Wash over me with your peace and help me to see with clarity your plans unfolding. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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