We were at the fair. My husband and oldest son had gone to buy ice cream, leaving me with our two youngest children. I was sitting, feeding the baby and watching my two year old explore the deserted benches, which just minutes before had been full of people. My son was wandering among the seats and found a half−full soda cup. As he picked it up and raised it to his lips, I called out to stop and not drink. I told him to take the cup to the garbage can just a few yards away. He obediently walked over and dropped the cup in the can. He stopped, looked at me and then turned his head in the direction his father and brother had just taken. I called him to come back and then watched in slow motion as he ran away from me towards the midway. Within seconds I could no longer see him. I sat, baby in arms, unable to believe or process what I had just witnessed. Certain he would reappear any moment. I was immobilized. Then I heard “Aren’t you going to go after him?” Those words propelled me into action.
Fear and doubt can immobilize us.
Exodus 14 records the story of Israel leaving Egypt. They had experienced the power of God in miraculous and tangible ways. Yet, as they neared the Red Sea they looked back and saw the armies of Pharaoh pursuing them. They cried out in fear to Moses. God had told Moses they would be delivered from this threat and he shared this message with the Israelites in verses 13 and 14. However, in the very next verse we see God speaking to Moses. “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the people to get moving!” (Exodus 14:15 NLT)
What happened between these two verses?
We can surmise Moses left the people to pray. God tells us he was crying out to Him. We’re not told what Moses was feeling or thinking but one can wonder if the confidence in God’s deliverance expressed to the Israelites perhaps hadn’t traveled those eight inches from head to heart.
There comes a time when moving forward is a must. God couldn’t do His work, eliminate the threat and fulfill His promise until Israel moved to cross the sea in front of them. Just as I needed to follow that runaway child. When I reached the midway, a concert had just let out. People were shoulder to shoulder. There was no way I could see a small toddler in the sea of adults. Still I had to move. Otherwise the woman who asked me if I was looking for a little boy wouldn’t have seen me, wouldn’t have been able to report she’d seen a policeman pick one up in his arms and walk towards the Sheriff’s station. And we wouldn’t have found our son in that man’s arms less than twenty minutes later.
Sometimes we need to take a step of faith into the unknown simply because we know our God. To stay immobilized in fear and doubt would rob us of the blessings God has in store. Blessing consistent with the Word He has given us, consistent with His promises, and in line with His character.
Are you in a place immobilized by fear or doubt? Wondering what’s next for you at this stage in your life? Not sure which turn to take? Let God’s words propel you. Get up and go after Him.
Mona Shriver: Mona Shriver worked as an emergency room nurse until the Lord called her out of that profession and into ministry. She is a Precept trained Bible teacher, has been active in women’s ministries, and speaks at special events and retreats. She serves her local church body in central California.
Mona has been married to Gary since 1974 and they have 3 grown sons. She and Gary co-founded Hope & Healing Ministries Inc. http://www.hopeandhealing.us which provides support and resources for couples in adultery recovery. They co-authored the book: Unfaithful, Hope and Healing after Infidelity. Learn more at Website:http://www.hopeandhealing.us