Deliverance. Freedom. What do those words make you think of? In what instances do you think they apply in your life? And how do we see them play out in every day life? I think sometimes God chooses to miraculously deliver us from bondage in our lives. Other times though God chooses to lead us through a difficult path to find freedom. Why does He do that? The answer can be found in the Bible.
Often in the Bible the modern day church is a reflection of the Israelites. In the Old Testament book of Exodus there is a good example of the them escaping bondage. It was no easy task for them to walk out of Egypt. And sometimes it can be the same for us as well. It’s possible that if God chose the easier path for Israelites to escape from the snare of bondage then when threatened by war or some other kind of battle they might have been tempted to run back to “Egypt” for fear. The same is also true for us.
I know when God initially miraculously delivered me from my bondage 17 years ago it was not by way of an easy stroll out of Egypt. It was in an instant that I was pulled out of my pit but it was also by traveling the long, hard road through the wilderness that He redeemed me and really changed my heart. God reached down his Hand and literally plucked me out of a deep pit but the consequences I dealt with after, consisted of many long, tough years. I think if my journey out had not been so trying there may have been times in my journey forward that I might’ve chosen to head back into “Egypt”. The truth is, the journey out was extremely long and hard, and there were times I looked for the easy way out. I did face times where I made the wrong decisions in my journey out that could’ve sent me back into the grip of Satan. However, in the midst of those trying days, when I remembered what I’d been through to even get as far as I’d gotten, that pushed me on to repent and continue forward in my journey. That journey took me from being overcome when facing some big GIANTS, to overcoming them and finding true freedom.
God chose in Exodus 13:17 to rescue people from Egypt not via an easy route, crossing through a nearby land, but by way of the Red Sea. The harder path was an impossible act that had God’s hand not parted the waters it would’ve never been successful. The purpose? Could it have been so that later on, after that trial, they would remember how God got them through that hardship and instead of fleeing they’d cling to Him during rough times? In verses 14 & 16 it says God wanted them to remember that it wasn’t by the strength of their own hands that they found freedom but only by the Hand of God that they were delivered.
Kind of makes me think that’s how the Bible study I lead on Tuesday nights goes. God does not want me to take credit for someone securing freedom because of my teaching. Only by my dependence upon Him preparing for class, leading me to teach His Word will He enable me to teach women and will any come to experience that same freedom that I’ve found from my biggest enemies. The power is in God’s Word. Period.
So friend don’t be discouraged if you’re moving forward slowly out of your pit. Maybe you’re in the wilderness looking for a way out. I want to encourage you to stay the course. Keep your eyes focused on what’s ahead not looking back at what’s behind you (Phil 3:13). Remember in our weakness He is strong (2 Cor 12:9). Keep going after His Word and hanging on tight to His promises to get you through. I promise you will never regret that.
“It’s not might by might not by power but it’s by The Spirit says the Lord” (Zec 4:6).