“For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness.”
The first time I read this, I remember thinking how silly it was for the Israelites to say something like that to Moses. They had just been rescued from the land of Egypt after God performed countless miracles through Moses, sent plagues that afflicted only the Egyptians, and caused Pharaoh to allow their departure. Yet, while standing on the brink of the Red Sea and watching the Egyptian army coming over the hills to decimate them, they cry out to Moses that it would have been better to die in the bonds of slavery than in the wilderness of freedom. Silly, right?
Then I realized how often I am guilty of uttering this very same phrase. My life is so attuned to the mechanical routine of comfort that I forsake God’s glorious wilderness for my own enslavement daily. I choose to live life on my own terms with my own clarity instead of following the gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit as He leads me through uncharted terrain into rivers of joy. The Gospel is a process by which we come to see that we are free from the chains of this world and we learn to live in that freedom. It is much more comfortable for us to trust in what is comfortable, but that is not how God operates. He calls us into the wilderness to live by the faith that He will protect us and provide for us. He does this because our comfortable routine is slavery, not life. He ushers us into the wilderness so that we will seek Him, trust Him, and become lost in Him.
Thank God that He relentlessly pursues us despite our consistent doubts in His faithfulness. What a Savior we have…