Archives for May 2013

Are You Looking for Your “Egypt?”

10 And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto the LORD. 11 And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? 12 Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness.

Exodus 14:10-12

 

The nation of Israel was enslaved by the Egyptians. Their cries were heard by God, and He sent Moses to free them. They witnessed the Hand of God in locusts, frogs, hail, flies, boils, and the Angel of Death. They marched triumphantly out of Egypt, carrying the gold and silver of their former taskmasters.

Out in the wilderness, God was with them in a cloud by day and fire by night. What else did they need but to simply follow what God said and where God led them? But that wasn’t enough. Out in the wilderness, they found themselves at the Red Sea. Before long, Pharaoh had changed his mind, and came charging after them. The people panicked, were scared, and cried to God. They complained about the change in their circumstances, and wanted to go back to where they were; to where they were comfortable and things were familiar in Egypt. Maybe they didn’t like being slaves, but they at least knew what to expect each day.

We get that way sometimes. We get comfortable in something, but we make a move to change; or God makes a move to change us. We go along with the change for a while, but eventually, we want to go back to the way things were.

A couple marries, but begin to have problems. They wonder why did they ever leave the “single” life? At least they knew what to expect. A person gets a promotion at work, but after a couple of months they begin to feel new pressures and demands; and they wish they had the old job back. God asks you to step out and teach or speak to others, and you are excited about the call. Then you begin to doubt what you are doing, and you wish you could go back to being just a face in the crowd.

Most of us don’t like change, even if it’s (or maybe especially if it’s) God providing the change. At some point, we wish we could go back to where we were before, what we were doing before, or who we were before. Things were comfortable there; they were familiar there; we felt at home in our “Egypt” and we want to go back there.

But that’s not what God has for us; not what God wants for us. There is a better place through the wilderness. When God is leading you, don’t look back. You weren’t meant to stay in “Egypt.”  

~Charles A. Kalkomey

Jochebed and a Mother’s Love

3 And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river’s brink.

Exodus 2:3

 

There are many stories in the Bible about the love of a mother.  One of those stories is about Jochebed, the mother of Moses.  Not only did she have a love for Moses, but she had a love for, and a trust in, God.

For years, the Pharaohs of Egypt remembered what Joseph had done to save not only their nation, but his own.  This Pharaoh didn’t know much about Joseph, and was concerned about the Israelites rebelling against Egypt.  So he ordered every male child born to the Hebrews to be killed.

Jochebed gave birth to a boy she named Moses.  She knew he was a “goodly” child, and hid him for three months.  Can you imagine hiding a baby for three months in the close quarters that the Hebrews were certainly living in?

She knew she had to do something to save her son.  So she wove a basket and covered it with tar so that the basket wouldn’t sink, and her baby wouldn’t drown.  Then, she set Moses afloat in the Nile.  She trusted God to take care of her son.

Pharaoh’s daughter found the child. Miriam, Moses’ sister, went to Pharaoh’s daughter and said she knew of someone who could nurse the child – his own mother!  Not only did Jochebed’s trust in God carry Moses to safety, her trust also made it possible for her to raise him during those early years.  She could spend time with her son and tell him the stories of the fathers of their faith.

A mother’s love is special.  She weaves a “basket of love” to cradle her children; to protect them from the things of this world that would attack them.  A mother coats the “basket” with the Spirit of God to keep her children from drowning in the river of deceit and lies of the enemy.  She tells those stories of family and life, Moses and Noah, and David and Jesus so her children will know of what came before them.  She trusts God to take care of the rest.

On this Mother’s Day, we give thanks for all of the things our Moms have done for us, tried to do for us and we wouldn’t listen, and for the “Jochebed” in each of them. Thank you for believing in us, and for trusting in God! 

Happy Mother’s Day – with Love

~Charles A. Kalkomey

Are You Feeling Sorted?

32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: 33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.

Matthew 25:32-33

 

We have a tendency to sort things in our life.  It doesn’t really seem to matter what it is, we sort it.

When was the last time you counted some money and didn’t sort what you were counting into pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters, dollars, etc.  That’s the way we do it.

We sort our clothes, although some of us more than others.  Our hanging clothes are arranged by slacks and shirts, summer and winter.  We have to sort our clothes when you wash them.  (Yes, men, you can’t wash white clothes with pink clothes.) 

Our flatware is sorted in the kitchen drawers.  Forks are in one slot, spoons in another.  And how can we find the Kuerig coffee we want unless we sort the K-Cups by flavors, decaf and regular?

Our government really likes to sort us.  We are sorted by race, income, and education.  (Perhaps that suggests something about government.) 

However, Paul says we are all the sameFor all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Romans 3:23)  We all start from the same place.

But there will come a day when that “final sort” will take place.  Just like the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats, those with a relationship with Jesus will be separated from those without that relationship.  At that time, we can’t simply start over as if we were sorting money or sorting clothes.  Once that sorting is done, we will each be responsible for how we lived our lives; for ourselves, or serving God. 

Go ahead.  Sort those pennies and quarters.  Sort your clothes and coffee.  But live your life for God.  Remember, He has the last “sort.”

~Charles A. Kalkomey