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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Leaving Egypt Behind

Scripture: Exodus 1:12, But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and the more they spread out,

Exodus 1:14, and they made their lives bitter with hard labor…

The silence and majesty of a redwood grove are difficult to describe. Quietness seeps inside. We stand hushed in the awesome splendor. Walking along the fern carpeted paths we come closer, and see another view. Many of these giant trees have been scorched by fire. Burnt bark exists in the midst of new growth.

The Egyptians used harsh measures against Israel, yet Israel multiplied. And in the midst of forced toil, Israel’s spiritual hunger grew. Israel remembered their God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and they called to Him for salvation. They turned to God’s promises and to God’s vision to see them through.

We do not deliberately choose bitter paths to follow, but, when they come, we can choose how to bear the burden. We too can return to God, leaning on His strength to cope. In His hands the acrid labor can become beautiful. In His care the dross in our lives can be burned away and leave us gold.

Lord, I need Your vision to seek Your good in the middle of my hard labors. Keep me faithful to endure, to stand, to grow.

Psalm of Worship: Psalm 9:9

The Lord also will be a stronghold for the oppressed,

A stronghold in times of trouble,

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