When Crying is Futile

“The Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to me? Tell the people of Israel to go forward.” (Exodus 14:15)

I have read this bible story a few times and as I read it again today the above verse caught my attention. Imagine Moses at the Red Sea panicking, the people are crying and bitterly complaining, and God’s response to Moses is, “why are you crying to me?” Sounds a little bit harsh of a response at a time when everything seemed impossible. “Tell the people to go forward is the next instruction from God.” Almost as if to say, “Moses I have trained and appointed you to lead, so act like a leader.”

“Lift up your staff, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it, that the people of Israel may go through the sea on dry ground.” (Exodus 14:16) I don’t think that God was tired of Moses crying out to him for help. On the contrary, I think what God was saying to Moses was, I promised that I would be with you to help you and to fight with and for you, so why are you now afraid? In fact, I have showed you my power, strength and might and I have also delegated that power to you, so use what you have.

Moses had used the staff before when God transformed it into a serpent in Exodus 4. And again in chapter 7 when Aaron’s staff swallowed up the staff of the Egyptians when they all transformed into serpents. The power was not in the staff but in God who used whatever Moses or Aaron carried to demonstrate who he is.

I believe there are seasons when we pray and cry out earnestly to God. There are other times when God wants us to use what we have to move forward in faith. This requires us to use our God given authority to either allow or disallow anything contrary to the will and purpose of God.

A.P.-Y.

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