When we look back and constantly dwell on the past, it seems to offer us a sense of safety even if the situation we were in was a dangerous one physically, emotionally or mentally. This is because as humans, change and newness always bring with it a sense of challenge, stretching and the unknown. But in the past we find comfort because we know all that we were dealing with, it was familiar even though it was difficult. Sounds strange, I know but I have seen time and time again in ministry where people will go back to abusive homes, manipulative relationships and immoral lifestyles just because it's familiar and provides a false sense of security.
I grew up in an abusive home, and it seemed easier to deal with the abuse than to open up to someone in authority for help; again it was the unknown of the future that kept me bound to that situation. Today I am writing about moving from the past and looking forward to the future because the life that God has for his children is always better than what we will leave behind. The children of Israel did not differ from us today, even though they were slaves in Egypt and cried out to God for freedom and help, they never seemed to let go of the past and the bondage that felt familiar to them. Their lives were plagued with beatings and hard labor from their taskmasters. The Hebrew men were belittled and disrespected in front of their wives and children, and they cried out to God. We are told in scriptures that God heard their cries and remembered his covenant with their forefathers and sent a deliverer - Moses to bring them out of Egypt.
I find comfort and encouragement from this story of the Exodus while it may have ended tragically for many; it serves as wisdom to us who study their lives to learn from their mistakes. Often we cry out to God to save us from our situations, but truthfully we want the saving on our terms and not his which breeds disappointments, and that causes us to look back. If only we could come to place in our lives where we believe God's plan is better than ours. The Israelites wanted to come out of bondage, but they did not trust God, and they longed to go back to Egypt for the false sense of security it provided to them. They did not see the wilderness as temporary or that God was with them in the coming out; all they could think about was what they had when they were in bondage.
Holy Spirit, help me today to let go of the familiar and the false sense of security of the past. Please help me to trust you with this process.
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