The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help because of their slavery went up to God.
Like the Israelites, we can find ourselves in bondage – impoverished and abused. It can be a relationship, a job or some other situation that causes us pain, depression, anxiety or other illness. We cry out to God for rescue, to bring us comfort and peace. And like the Israelites we are rescued from bondage, set free from our situation. But the Israelites did not simply take two steps out of Egypt and into the promised land. The journey was long and arduous, taking decades. And likewise for us, our journey to healing and peace can be long and arduous.
They were terrified and cried out to the Lord. They said to Moses, ‘Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, “Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians”? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!’
When the Israelites were faced with obstacles – thirst, hunger, danger – they grumbled and cried out against God. They looked back at their life in bondage wistfully, wishing they were back in Egypt. So too when faced with obstacles – uncertainty, loneliness, sadness – we turn our minds back with doubt, gloss over our suffering of the past and even wish we could resurrect our life of bondage.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him
But as he did for the Israelites, God has a plan for us and is working for our good. After decades of wandering in the wilderness, learning to follow and trust God, the Israelites finally entered the promised land. So too must we persevere in our journey of healing (however short or long), following and trusting God and therein fully receive his promise of peace, abundance and life.
I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.