In the Raw: Camping at the Red Sea

You might not believe me but if you want to test your ability to teach the Bible, I highly recommend teaching Kindergarteners.

You will either “have” them or lose them. They have no filter and will say what they think. But the best part? When they get it, they’ve really GOT it! They will interact with you and infer connections that will astound you.

This year, I’ve been teaching through the stories of the Old Testament and tying together all the ways God keeps His promises. Starting with the first promise after Eden and through Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph and now Moses. We continue on with Rahab and David in anticipation of the ultimate promise kept in Jesus.

So tonight, the plan is to talk about Moses and the nation of Israel crossing the Red Sea and God giving them rules because of how much He loves His people.

This has been a heavy week. Ever had one? Good things mixed up with hard things and you just end up feeling the weight of the world.

I’ve been prepping for a couple days now, but this afternoon, I opened up my Bible to Exodus 14:1-4 and the tears just poured. Yahweh (the God who is and always will be) told Moses exactly where to camp since he and the people are now out of Egypt. He tells him to go down and camp facing the sea. Facing it. Then He tells Moses how Pharaoh’s heart will be hardened and how he will send out all his army after God’s people. But God says “I will get glory over Pharaoh and all his host. and the Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh.”

Why the tears?? God KNEW about the Red Sea. He set it all up. He knew the terror they would feel. He wanted Egypt to know in no uncertain terms that He, Yahweh, is God over all. For the glory of His Name.

My Red Sea that feels so impossible is a set up. God knows my fear and terror but I must remember how He always keeps His promises and always will.

God does such amazing things and I so easily pull an Israelite and forget.

I must remember…

The cash anonymously placed in an envelope in my college mailbox so I could continue for the next semester.

My senior advisor suddenly leaving and the new male prof who would eventually change the way I see God through the idea that everything is theological.

The way God moved me to teach where I did not want to be so I could learn.

Meeting my husband because a friend convinced me to go to Michigan because I didn’t have a summer job because two of them fell through. One year to the day later embarking on a journey that’s now 16 years and counting.

God’s gentle faithfulness to us as we figured out each other and parenting the beautifully stubborn little girl who came along.

Learning that His plans aren’t mine when the 3rd pregnancy showed up. Then the ultrasound wasn’t right and my belief in the goodness of God was brought into question.

Seeing his chocolate eyes for the first time and the doctor looking at his notes and asking if he had the wrong room because none of their concerns came to be. This after they asked me if I knew all my options and whether I wanted to abort him.

And I guess the ultimate mighty work is that God can somehow use my story for His glory.

Yes. This God who tells us His personal Name is also with us and sets up our Red Seas so all will know He’s God over it all.

So I will camp facing my Red Sea.

I won’t flinch.

I won’t argue, complain or cower in fear.

I will stand – even if I tremble a bit – knowing God’s got even this.


Photo by Roxanne Desgagnés on Unsplash

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