Closing the Gap 12.4.18

By December 4, 2018Daily Devotional

Advent Season

Week 48 Day 2

Pray

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Exodus 1:8-14 Then a new king, who did not know about Joseph, came to power in Egypt. “Look,” he said to his people, “the Israelites have become much too numerous for us. Come, we must deal shrewdly with them or they will become even more numerous and, if war breaks out, will join our enemies, fight against us and leave the country.” So they put slave masters over them to oppress them with forced labor, and they built Pithom and Rameses as store cities for Pharaoh. But the more they were oppressed, the more they multiplied and spread; so the Egyptians came to dread the Israelites and worked them ruthlessly. They made their lives bitter with hard labor in brick and mortar and with all kinds of work in the fields; in all their hard labor the Egyptians used them ruthlessly.

Reflect:

Joseph, a celebrity of national and international fame who was used by God to save an entire nation became an irrelevant, unknown to the reigning king.  What the former celebrity did for the nation in the past had no bearing on life now. Such is the fate of all humans of great renown. They are soon forgotten.  Now the people this hero helped save from famine find themselves living as slaves in a hostile place. A new king, who did not know about Joseph, came to power and the waiting began.  The hero who had taken the people of Israel into Egypt had been a waiter himself, as had his father, and his father’s father. They had all been trained through waiting on God to know and trust God.  Now the people as an entire nation had new vocations, they were all waiters. Their wait would last for centuries. Some of these waiters would die waiting. Some would live to see God’s deliverance and the end of their waiting in Egypt only to enter a time of waiting in the wilderness.  When God said, “go” they went, when he said, “stop” they stopped. Such is the life of a waiter. Israel was by and large not good at waiting. They complained…a lot. They tried to quit and take up other vocations but God convinced them through very direct means that they should stay where he had put them.  Israel finally came to the land of promise but the obstinate waiters did not get to go in. Their children did and these children of waiters became warrior waiters. They were trained in a different kid of waiting. Their parents walked (wandered) in the wilderness as God trained them in the grace of waiting. The children, now in the land of promise, lived in a state of near constant combat.  Was this the promise they had waited for? Yes, and no. The promise was not a life free from the waiting or walking, or “warrioring” it was a life free to experience God and his life. The various ways God trained his people to wait was part of his larger purposes in training them to trust and to love him. Those who died in Egypt, or in the wilderness, or later in Canaan all alike had the same opportunity to experience God’s abundant life for them.  None of them were cheated; all of them, regardless of their circumstances could experience God if they would. Some did, some did not. Waiting is training. Waiting might feel like you are stuck in Egypt, wandering in the wilderness, or hoping this current battle will finally come to an end. Whatever your situation…your vocation is waiter. Waiting is what waiters do. The only question is what kind of waiter will you choose to be? Whether you will wait is not your choice, what kind of waiter you will be is entirely your choice.

Pray after reading:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)

Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

 

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