The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?
Exodus is a book about the fight for freedom from an oppressive kingdom and the challenge to live freely as God’s very own people in the faithful love-binding relationship he has won for us. I hope you know that it is not a history of amazing spiritual people who never question, never struggle. The thoughts, emotions and faith of the people in this book are very like ours. Have you ever heard of “Shiphrah and Puah”? They are two ordinary women who were midwives and listened to God. He knows the name of these two heroes who were Egyptians, not God’s people. They did not do what the King wanted them to because they honored and respected the true God even more than they feared Pharaoh, who could easily order for them to be punished or destroyed. They were a crucial part in Yahweh’s plan to save the Hebrew baby boys and, therefore, the entire future of his beloved people. Hear the tender love of the God who saw Shiprah and Puah. Exodus 1:20 “So God was kind to the midwives”
Moses’ mom was not afraid to hide him then boldly takes him to the river in the waterproof basket she had made. His sister watches to make sure he is seen and then offers to find a nanny to care for him while he needs breastfeeding. When the princess agrees, she brings Moses’ mom who gets to mother him while he is young.
God used the women in these chapters right where they were, as midwives, as a mom and a sister. Where is Jesus asking us to do something for him or speak out for people that means there is some cost in time, energy or emotion; maybe a risk to our comfort or reputation, even our safety? What are the fears that keep us from listening to God’s heart? Where is Jesus asking you to be part of his plan to rescue and save in your community, to care for the vulnerable or defend the oppressed?
Moses’ efforts to stand up for his own oppressed people ended in a death and in him having to run away. We cannot do take a stand our own way or in our own strength as he did. Only when we pray, asking the Holy Spirit to lead us in his way and his strength, can we take a stand for God. And when you do, remember he knows your name and sees all that you do for him.