January 10 – Walk by Faith

Hebrews 11: 23 – 31  NLT

23 It was by faith that Moses’ parents hid him for three months when he was born. They saw that God had given them an unusual child, and they were not afraid to disobey the king’s command.

24 It was by faith that Moses, when he grew up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. 25 He chose to share the oppression of God’s people instead of enjoying the fleeting pleasures of sin. 26 He thought it was better to suffer for the sake of Christ than to own the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking ahead to his great reward. 27 It was by faith that Moses left the land of Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger. He kept right on going because he kept his eyes on the one who is invisible. 28 It was by faith that Moses commanded the people of Israel to keep the Passover and to sprinkle blood on the doorposts so that the angel of death would not kill their firstborn sons.

29 It was by faith that the people of Israel went right through the Red Sea as though they were on dry ground. But when the Egyptians tried to follow, they were all drowned.

30 It was by faith that the people of Israel marched around Jericho for seven days, and the walls came crashing down.

31 It was by faith that Rahab the prostitute was not destroyed with the people in her city who refused to obey God. For she had given a friendly welcome to the spies.

Here are more examples of people who trusted God. The story of Moses’ birth is told in Exodus 2. There is no indication in the account that his parents were told by God directly that Moses was special. Here is the verse that tells us about the birth: “The woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was beautiful, she hid him for three months.” (2: 2) 

The story then goes on to talk about hiding Moses in the reeds by the Nile River and Pharaoh’s daughter finding him and deciding to keep the baby. I try to imagine what it would have been like to be a pregnant young mom in a country where the Pharaoh had decreed that all baby boys born to the Israelites must be killed at birth. And there is your beautiful new son in your arms. If we were realistic, her attempt to save her son by keeping him in a waterproof basket wasn’t likely going to be successful. Yet she knew their people were God’s people, and I suspect she prayed that God would protect that baby. 

God’s protection was quite incredible. Moses is raised to adulthood in the Pharoah’s palace. He must have been told his true origins because we read this: “Now it came about in those days when Moses had grown up, that he went out to his brethren and looked on their hard labors; and he saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his brethren.” (Exodus 2: 11) God had a plan for Moses to lead the people out of Egypt, and he gave Moses a start in life growing up in the palace that trained him in ruling/leadership ways. 

Perhaps like many Christians, you may start your day praying for God’s guidance in that day. You don’t have a particular request, just a willingness to follow God’s leading in whatever comes your way. You make decisions, and then later you realize that God was guiding you in your decisions, that God had a plan that you were part of. I suspect that was what happened to Moses’ mother. She prayed for this son, having no idea that God had a plan. And God did have a plan!

I love the fact that Rahab was mentioned. Rahab, the prostitute. Does God care for those people that we middle-class folks tend to ignore? Does God care for people who have not grown up knowing about him? Did Rahab totally understand who God was? I’m not sure. I suspect she had heard stories of this new “nation” that was marching through the territory and conquering cities. And now they were at Jericho. If she helped these people, maybe she would survive the fighting. So, she decided to help – and she was saved. In her life after that particular time, she would have learned about this God, and realized God had saved her. 

We often are not aware that God is at work. We may pray about certain situations, but they don’t always turn out the way we hoped. We may not be aware that God is working in a family member, neighbour or co-worker’s life, and then unexpectedly a conversation happens where we have a chance to speak on God’s behalf. When we think about faith, sometimes we think it must be a particular situation where we ask for God’s help. But really, faith is depending and trusting that God is at work in every part of our day whether we are totally aware of it or not.

Read this verse again:

“Now faith is the certainty of things hoped for (or expected), a proof (or conviction about) of things not seen.” 

Today, if this pandemic and its restrictions are bothering you – upset about school online instead of in person, panicking about your job, missing your friends and family, worried about your health, annoyed about the arguments that seem to be cropping up too much, sad about the divisions in your family … and the list goes on …

Know that God is at work. Have faith. 

“Now faith is the certainty of things hoped for (or expected), a proof (or conviction about) of things not seen.” 

Our song for today is Walk by Faith by Jeremy Camp

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