This morning I came across a little section in Exodus 5 that was so encouraging to me that I thought I had to share it for those of you who might be walking (trudging? crawling?) through the mire of hard times.
In Exodus 3 and 4 the Lord clearly calls Moses to do a GREAT work for Him. He speaks to Moses from a burning bush and tells him that He is going to deliver Moses' people and take them to a great land flowing with milk and honey. A rich, gorgeous land.
God tells him that the Israelites will pay heed to Moses and patiently answers Moses' "But what if..." questions and gives him signs to perform, so there is no question that God is doing this thing. Moses obeys, goes to Pharaoh, and does just what God says.
And Pharaoh quickly and succinctly says "NO... oh, and because you asked, I'm going to make their lives more miserable and increase the work they have to do. Thanks for coming."
Then Moses and Aaron meet with the foreman of the Israelites after they went in and begged Pharaoh for mercy and they come out after getting told off from Pharaoh and tell Moses and Aaron "Thanks a lot. You have not only increased our work, but now Pharaoh hates us and doesn't care if his servants kill us..." (loose paraphrase)
So now Moses, who was feeling pretty good at the start of this, is completely confused, frustrated, and discouraged. He goes to God and asks "Why are you harming these people? Why did you EVER send me? All that has happened with this great plan of Yours is that it has brought harm to these people and you haven't done what You said You would do at all!" (again, loose paraphrase)
That really struck me.
As I'm sinking under teenage attitudes here... and disobedience... and anger and unkindness toward siblings, I often wonder,
WHY did you even make me the mom of these boys?
Why didn't you give me more mellow, easier taught boys?
I'm not quite sure You got this right God... I'm supposed to be the joyful, fun mom...
but that can't happen when all I deal with is anger, selfishness, and attitude.
And I see NO improvement in them AT ALL!
I can't do this!
So as my friends go through a hard time with displacement, and not sure where God will have them live...
And another family goes through the tragic death of their son...
And other friends continue to get beat down with health issues...
And I crawl on through the teenage attitude and constant teaching, mistakes, and trying again...
I can take rest in the story of Moses and know that God hasn't forgotten me.
God hasn't messed up.
God is doing something.
God is working.
God is there, even if things seem to be getting worse,
It's ALL part of God's plan for me.
In God I have put my trust, I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me? -Psalm 56:11
But I know that that Lord has set apart the godly man for Himself; The Lord hears when I call to Him. Tremble, and do not sin; Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still. Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and trust in the Lord. -Psalm 4:3-5