Thursday 1-21-16 (Home in Modesto, California)
Scripture reading for today: Exodus 1 – 2 Psalm 88 Luke 21
S=Scripture O=Observation A=Application P=Prayer SOAP for the soul.
S. Ex 2:23-25 Then the children of Israel groaned because of the bondage, and they cried out; and their cry came up to God because of the bondage. So God heard their groaning, and God remembered His covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God acknowledged them. NKJV
O. The Israelites had become slaves to the Egyptians and were being driven to the point of death by their masters. The Pharaoh had seen how they had multiplied and feared them. So he is deliberately trying to trim down their numbers by terrible forced labor. And God heard and took note of their groaning. And although these mistreated slaves could not detect any alleviation, God’s plan was already in motion.
A. Does God hear my groaning? Is He aware of my suffering? Do I have to yell at Him to get His attention? How many decades did God allow His chosen people to suffer such treatment? When I am down, when I can see no hope, when my pillow is wet with tears, is God listening? Does He take note? I cry, “How long, Oh Lord.”
I have a Christian friend that is less than 60 years old and has just had his foot amputated to save his life. I can only imagine the mental suffering, knowing that he will have to start all over with a different kind of life. Does God hear? Is He taking note? Yet, I know this man. He will not lose faith. In the heat of it all he knows that God is working out a plan. And although it seems impossible, all this will work out for good, for he “loves God and is called according to His purposes.” Romans 8:28
P. Dear Lord, I have never suffered like that and cannot know what my thoughts and attitude might be. You know my heart better than I do. What lies ahead for me? Well, if You do not return within a few years to take us all up with you, I will have to lay this old body down for a better one. Dying often includes extreme pain. Am I ready for that? I don’t know. But whatever may lie just ahead, I know that You, my God, are listening and looking and taking note. Your plan is already in motion. When the pressure is on, please Lord, keep me from feeling that You have abandoned me. May my faith never waver! Amen.