“So the Lord did it.” Exodus 8:24 NIRV
Just like that. He sent a plague across the land of Egypt. He didn’t have to work hard or be convinced to do it. He just did it. As I sit here absolutely stressing about how He is going to move next, I read that He just did it. He’s not going to give me any fair warning. He’s not going to send a flashing neon sign. When God moves, He moves. It’s fast. It’s usually pretty huge. And it’s always undeniably Him at work. And He doesn’t need my help to do it.
So, is going back to work full-time my way of helping Him? Is He putting all these current struggles in front of us to make it very clear that I need to be back at work? After all, if I was working we wouldn’t be concerned with how much all of this is going to cost. Or, instead, is He trying to teach me a lesson in reliance, in patience, in His faithfulness? Is He preparing to shower us with a blessing we can’t imagine—one so big that satan knows we will give only God glory for it, so he is doing everything in his power to make me rely on me, to turn from God and “take care of myself”. Something tells me it’s that one.
I feel sort of like the Israelites. I prayed my sun stand still prayer that God would provide a way for me to be home with Dane. And here I sit a stay-at-home mom. The Israelites begged the Lord to deliver them from Egypt. And he did. He did exactly what they asked. But what they meant was they wanted to be delivered straight to the land flowing with milk and honey. They didn’t want the 40 year detour through the desert. They didn’t want manna and quail, they wanted steak and all the fixin’s.
I feel so amazingly blessed to be home with Dane. The Lord “delivered” me, so to speak, from work. But now that I’m here, with just enough to survive—just enough manna for each day (Ex16:4)—I am complaining. I am unhappy. I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom who could afford to be a stay-at-home mom. I want my steak… I’m kinda tired of the manna.
As we pray for more manna, I cry to my husband like the Israelites cried out to God. I tell him I should go back to work. We could make more money do this or that. We put our car and our house up for sale. But there still is just enough for each day. No breadcrumb trail to ensure me that as long as I keep walking there will be more manna. No picture of the heaping pile of manna in the distance. Nope. We just open the door each morning and find exactly enough manna for that day. And do you know what the Bible says about my complaining? When I cry out to my husband it’s not to him, instead Moses told the Israelites, “You aren’t speaking against us. You are speaking against the Lord.” Ouch.
I am grateful my sweet husband works hard for us. He bears a heavy burden as the spiritual leader and breadwinner for our home. It’s a burden I am grateful he bears because it would be too heavy for me. It is not because he doesn’t make enough, it’s because we are over committed to things we cannot do anything about yet. A house that won’t sell. A car that’s worth less than we owe on it. Two words: student loans. This week one car needed the transmission fixed, we thought the battery had died in the other, the dishwasher died, and I fell through the ceiling while walking in the attic. Our manna for today is that 1) the battery only needed to be charged and 2) fixing the transmission isn’t going to cost what we thought.
While Tevie was home for lunch I went to work out. Thanks to Jesus Culture radio on Pandora, I had a full-on worship jam session on the treadmill and was trying to keep from weeping and raising my hands in praise in fear the college students on either side of me might think I was some fat, old lady about to pass out. J When the Lord wants to get my attention He strategically plants “Revelation Song” somewhere for me to hear. I am then reminded that He is Holy. He is my breath and Living Water and all I need. And, even if for a moment, satan’s voice is silenced, I stepped onto less shaky ground and regain confidence that He is all I will ever need.
In the Big Picture, this earthly life is so very, very short. In this illustration, Francis Chan talks about just how short this life is compared to eternity. It seems kind of silly to spend so much time worrying about such a short period of time.
Through all the conviction I have felt recently while reading Exodus (I’m doing the Canonical reading plan on the YouVersion Bible app—try it!), there has been one phrase that brings comfort instead:
“The Lord will fight for you. Just be still.” Exodus 14:14 NIRV