The Red Sea Didn’t Move – God Did

Move Red Sea, Move

Why am I thinking about Moses and the Red Sea?  Maybe it’s because the movie, The Ten Commandments, just made its annual Easter appearance on television.  Maybe it’s because current events are reminding me strongly of that scene where Moses and the newly freed Israelites, while being pursued by Pharaoh and his army, suddenly found themselves on a cliff overlooking a vicious body of water with nowhere to go.  You see, as this blog is being written, we are in the sixth week of self-isolation in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.  For some reason, this week feels like a Red Sea scenario, where the pandemic has no intention of showing those of us, caught up in the pandemic’s fray, favor. 

The novel Coronavirus has impacted every continent in this world.  As of today, it has claimed approximately 166K lives amid almost 2.4M reported cases worldwide.  These numbers, along with smaller, more detailed numbers for our local communities, have become an ongoing byline to every news program or headline being broadcast.  Sadly, during this week six there appears to be no way out as we dangle on that cliff, waiting for something to make it end today.

But It’s Hard, Lord

And so, I think about Moses.  I am pretty sure he was being yelled at, questioned, and cursed (because the Bible says so) by the very people for which he had just facilitated freedom.   In these days of selfies, Moses probably would have been hit in the back of the head with sheep dung if he turned his back on this angry crowd to take a picture, or worse, pushed into the roiling waves of the Red Sea.  It is also during these times that I wonder about all the ‘wonderment’ in the Bible and why the story of the Red Sea is so endearing.  I think it’s a reminder to us that God came through during an impossible time. A time that truly was the difference between life and death.

God Knows

God could have only come through for the Israelites if He was mindful of the imminent need.  He wasn’t off toiling with something elsewhere He could have missed their cries.  God was very aware of their need and was present in the moment (read Exodus 14).  Likewise, when we cry out to Him, God is a very present help already aware of the need (Psalm 46:1).

This COVID-19 season is a tough one. Tough because all the endings are not happy ones.  Many are dying and there is no logic as to why some survive.  The Red Sea is still being the vicious body of water that it always was, and it seems God is not willing to move it so we can get on with the rest of our lives.  Inherently, I believe, that is the point.  When we look at scripture, time and time again, we see God doesn’t necessarily remove the situation; He moves in the situation.  Yes, we see lepers healed and sight restored in the Bible, but these miracles usually happen when the person is already dangling on that cliff crying out for an intervention.  The ‘red sea’ is still there, looming in the background hoping to swallow up the person’s hopes and dreams – and then we also see, God is still there. 

We are reminded that, just like Moses and the Israelites, God does not necessarily move our ‘Red Sea Situations’ out of the way. Instead, He moves in them.  God moves in ways that give us a better understanding of His love and His power.  Much like Jesus’ crucifixion on the cross, He didn’t make the cross go away. The movement came, through Jesus’ death; and that movement continues to today in lives again and again.

Give Your ‘Red Sea’ to the Lord

As this pandemic continues to make moves across this nation and this world remember, God is still moving in ‘Red Sea Situations’.  God is moving in your situation.  He is a very present help in times of trouble.  God is our refuge and, more importantly, God knows your circumstances and what you are going through.  Keep seeking God’s face and keep your faith.  Like Moses, wave your staff (e.g. through prayer) and let God move in your life.  God’s movement always has a plan (Proverbs 19:21) that can overcome any circumstance and is backed by a love that is greater than anything we could imagine (Ephesians 3:20).

#LivingTheRedeemedLife

When Life Hits Hard, Get It Together!

God Guides the Crossroads of Life
Photo by Zane Lee on Unsplash

Coming Apart At The Seams

There are times in life where we can hear God telling us to ‘Get it Together’!  Much like the perpetual slap on each cheek or being picked up by the scruff of the neck when we get overly anxious, God must, at times, step in to stop us in our tracks – before we head over the figurative cliff just ahead. 

The momentary detour may protect us from that path we are most familiar with that seems to lead to the same old outcome.  There can also be detours to make us reflect on a path that we are terrified to take because it is unfamiliar or unknown to us.  Whatever it is, if you are a believer, God is constantly trying to get your attention to remind you of your purpose and His plan in your life; to help you ‘get it together’. God manages everything and will help you manage the issues of life.

God Holds Everything Together

In the Bible, there is a reminder in Colossians 1:17 that says –

“He is before all things, and in him, all things hold together.

The verses preceding this verse provide a more detailed context but verse 17 is something we should keep in the forefront of our minds – the fact that Jesus is our Sovereign Lord and knows everything we are going through.  When we feel our lives are spiraling out of control, He is aware and knows how to get it back together.  How?  Because “in Him, all things hold together.”

On Safe Ground

So, when you feel the pressure to conform, give in, fight or get frustrated remember your faith.  Your faith, along with the voice of the Holy Spirit, will guide you to peace and understanding.  You never walk alone, and you never walk without a guide or directions to ‘get it together’ – if you have Jesus Christ as your Savior. There’s also peace in knowing that God works in ways that don’t make sense to others anyway. Again, God holds everything together and will help you manage the issues of life.

#LivingTheRedeemedLife

God Kept Me

God Kept Me

That is my testimony. God kept me.  Just like the song lyrics say, God kept me.  Through the valleys and uncertainties, God has kept me. The experiences of my life’s journey remind me of how God’s cover stays with us always.  God kept me, and He keeps you too.

Looking in the Rearview

It has been one year since I published my book, “What Just Happened?  Living the Redeemed Life, When All Hell Breaks Loose.”  An eventful year filled with testimonies from others who were touched by my story and the busyness that comes from taking that initial step of going from personal privacy to transparency on a more public level. It has been a year where I have had to face my fears as well as my strengths and weakness.  I’ve had to break down personal barriers to my esteem and identity because it is not easy putting your story ‘out there’.  I realize that my life has been crazy and wondrous all at the same time.  I also got more connected to the gifts God has poured into me as I put that ‘social butterfly’ tendency I’ve always had (that sometimes annoys my husband) to work. Who knew that my chattiness was really a gift to be used?  I didn’t know but God did.  It was also a time where I saw God open doors that could only have been opened because of the experiences I had gone through.  This year only added to the ‘awe’ I already knew about our awesome God!

Finding My Way

This new season didn’t just begin in the last year, it really started three years ago with the transition of a career I had always known and my mother’s illness and ultimate death. As I mentioned in my book, when these events happened, I lost my foundation.  I not only lost my income but my identity as I knew it (at least in my mind).  Things changed so drastically for me that the coping skills I have used my entire life didn’t work for me.  I prayed and cried so much that they became my daily norm.  That is where the lyrics to the song “I Almost Let Go” by Kurt Carr & the Kurt Carr Singers came into play:

I almost let go
I felt like I couldn’t take life anymore
My problems had me bound
Depression weighed me down

But God held me close
So I wouldn’t let go
God’s mercy kept me
So I wouldn’t let go

Way – Found

The Lord’s presence in my life sustained me and pulled me up in my grief.  His mercy allowed me to recognize I still had breath and could take a small step each day.  The book was the culmination of the journaling I did to heal through the process. Only God could take that season of my life and turn it into something that I could speak about as a blessing! As I look back on how God loved me through my loss I realize – it had to happen the way it happened.  God needed to give me the understanding I now have for the new places He is taking me in my career, ministry, and life.  Just like salvation, life comes from death.  Gain comes from loss.  Lessons come from pain and healing eventually comes from hurt.   God kept me, and He keeps you too.

That is Living the RedeemedLife. You are not alone, and God really has a plan and purpose for your life, through all of the ups and the downs. 

You are Redeemed, Restored and Rejoiced!