Fear of the unknown.
It’s out if my comfort zone.
Ever had these thoughts before?
I sure have.
I enjoyed reading Follow the Cloud by John Stickl.
This book was written based on the the Bible’s account of the s escape from Pharaoh in Egypt in Exodus.
I was having my own spiritual struggles while I was reading this and came across this quotable statement, “The familiarity of shackles is often more comforting than the unknown of freedom”.
WOW! Can you relate to that statement?
Too often we are reluctant to pursue a new venture because it’s too uncomfortable. *NEWS FLASH* God didn’t say our life would be comfortable when we agree to follow him.
I know, I’m preaching, BUT this totally smacked me in the face because this is ME!
I like comfort, familiar things, and security.
Here’s what was going on in Exodus…
Egypt was ruled by Pharaoh. He had the Israelites working to build the pyramids. The Israelites were oppressed and worked hard, but they still cried out to God to save them. So God raised up Moses. Moses was born to an Israelite family. Pharoah had just decreed that all male babies were to be put to death. So Moses’ mother put him in a basket and sent him out on the Nile River where Pharaoh’s daughter found him while she was bathing. She took him in and raised him as her son. Fast forward a few years and Moses is outside the palace and sees a guard beating an Israelite slave. He kills the guard and flees to Midian. There he meets his future father-in-law, Jethro and starts a peaceful life. One day, Moses was tending his father-in-laws flocks of sheep and came across a bush that was burning with flames, but not burning it’s leaves or branches.
Wait, what? A bush that had fire “burning” in it, but was not burning the bush itself? WOW! I bet that was a sight to see!
OK, so Moses encounters God at this burning bush and God tells Moses that he and his brother, Aaron, are going to go to Pharaoh and tell him to let God’s people go. And so begins the long back and forth dance of Pharaoh saying “no” and the plagues raining down on Egypt.
When the last plague comes and take the first-born child of every household that did not paint lamb’s blood over their door frames, Pharaoh finally agrees to release the Israelites.
Only to end up lying and chasing the Israelites.
BACK UP A MINUTE.
So, Pharaoh released the Israelites. The Israelites had 2 choices, 1. stay and remain slaves or 2. follow God into the unknown future. Imagine having no time to prepare to pick up and move your family. The deal was that they were escaping to the “Promised Land”, but they didn’t know when or where that was happening.
What faith that must have taken to pick up and just leave Egypt on faith! How uncomfortable would that have been?!
Here’s the cool thing. “From the moment the Israelites stepped ouf of Egypt, God invited them to follow the cloud” (Stikl, 19).
God was with them every step of the way. He was there in the form of the cloud during the day, and in the form of a pillar of fire during the night.
“God provided exactly what they needed: a promise, his presence, and a next step” (Stickl, 19).
God is always speaking. The problem is: ARE WE LISTENING?