He did not just provide an answer; he wanted her to see he was the answer
Moses said to the LORD, “See, you say to me, ‘Bring up this people,’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me.” (Exodus 33:12a)
And [the LORD] said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” (Exodus 33:14)
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a step-by-step guide for navigating deployment? My guess is someone has attempted to write such a book, magazine article, or blog post. But who are they kidding? There are no formulas or systematic steps to make sure everything goes according to plan. Deployment is something you just have to go through. It reminds me of the children’s verse about going on a bear hunt:
Can’t go under it.
Can’t go over it.
Can’t go around it.
Got to go through it.
It is the how to go through a situation that can trip us on the way.
Moses found himself in need of direction on how to get through the desert and into the Promised Land. He came to God looking for an answer as if to say, “Show me the step-by-step way to get from here to there.” He had a real need for God to give him practical guidance. Face it—this had not been an easy journey. The Israelites were a challenging group of people to lead and, besides, who knew what dangers they might encounter ahead.
At this point, God added a new dimension to the journey when he said to Moses, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” Wow! In these few words God did not just provide an answer, God wanted Moses to see he was the answer.
God reassured Moses that he would bring the people through the desert to the Promised Land. He promised rest, which usually meant an end to evil, an enemy, hostility, or adversity.1 More than that, God promised his very presence.
More than that, God promised his very presence
In the Gospel according to John, Jesus encountered a woman who was drawing water at a well (John 4:5–42). The woman was at the well for a practical reason—she needed water for her physical thirst. Jesus offered her living water. He did not just provide an answer; he wanted her to see he was the answer.
In the process of asking God how to get through a situation, do not miss the message that God wants not only to provide you practical help; he wants to provide you with his presence. Let God show you he is the answer you need.
Where do you fall on the trust versus control continuum? What makes it hard for you to trust God as the answer?
Prayer for the Journey
Lord, forgive me when I grasp for control. Help me relinquish control to you as the answer to my every need. Amen.
1 Bob Deffenbaugh, “The Presence of God with his People (Exodus 33:12–17),” www.bible.org, accessed December 9, 2014. https://bible.org/seriespage/28-presence-god-his-people-exodus-3312–17.