What do we do with life’s disappointments? How do we handle unmet expectations and misplaced dreams? We come face to face with our deepest desires gone awry and soon we find ourselves contending for our hearts. The battleground is ferocious at times. Questions are thrown out. Some answers are tackled but injuries are almost inevitable. Who will own us? What will control us? What will we allow to consume us? Will we surrender to these hurdles? That they may ruin us? Will we complain and grow bitter and scream from the inside out…THIS IS SOOO UNFAIR? Or we will we choose to allow our hearts to be victorious?
But what does that mean?
Well, first, let me give you an illustration that is very meaningful to me. It is a very old story. I’m sure you have heard it too. Perhaps it is one of your early memories from Sunday School or the annual Easter movie you watched with your family. It is the story of Moses and the Israelites.
The Israelites were God’s chosen people. They knew there was this land that was promised to them, waiting for them. Great misfortune overtook them when they were enslaved by the Egyptians. Many wondered how this could have possibly happened. Where was God? Had he forgotten them? Did he realize that they were slaves to the brutal Egyptians? Did he forget his promise to them? For hundreds of years they waited for their redeemer. In time, God rose up Moses, and when the moment was right, he lead them out of Egypt. Over and over again the Israelites faced death and hardship as they encountered impediments to their progress: Pharaoh’s army, the Red Sea, hunger, and thirst. Each and every time, God showed up…just when they thought they were finished, he would perform a miracle and they would be saved. God gave them so much encouragement, yet they continued to grumble and complain. Even going so far as to wish that they were back in Egypt, enslaved again. The story goes on and on…but my point is that God has a plan for each of us. Though we face colossal obstructions in our path, God has a way around or over and even sometimes directly through each one. But more than anything, he wants our hearts. He wants us to believe in him, hope in him, and love him. Expect him to show up. It may not always be to our liking because in the long run, through that 20/20 hindsight, you will discover that His plan was better.
And here’s the kicker verse…the whole reason I bring this up:
Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.” Exodus 14:13
LOVE. THIS. PASSAGE. This has been one I have come back to time and time again.
Who are your Egyptians? What are your Egyptians? We have a MAJOR promise in Jesus. “The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.” Not maybe someday…but NEVER. Even more, he tells us to Stand FIRM and you will be delivered. The New Living Translation says “you will be rescued.” We need to stand firm. In my case, it’s learning that infertility doesn’t define me. It doesn’t own me. I OWN IT! How I respond to it, how I let it influence me is my choice. Just like love. You choose to love your family despite the hurts you have suffered by them. You choose to love your husband each day though he may be imperfect. You choose to trust God with your “Egyptians” because…if you stand firm and stick it out…your own land of milk and honey will come…in due time.