Anyone ever feel like the Lord is trying to rain on your parade or is slow in moving you from a place of extreme discomfort to a place of security and comfort? Just an FYI, we know growth does not happen in our places of comfort.
Have you ever found yourself in a place or season that is so difficult, that you even begin planning and plotting to go back to a place God has already delivered you from? Does that place, right now, seem to be more inviting to you than where you currently are?
Perhaps, you have already decided what you wanted to do in your uncomfortable season, have stepped out and already begun moving in that direction, but then decided to ask the Lord what He thought, in hopes that He would co-sign what you wanted to do?
Sin and bondage is often like that. When we are in tough seasons of our life, even while we are waiting, it really shows us what we are made of and what is really in us. Sometimes, the places we may be in seem so completely unbearable that if we aren’t careful, we begin to long for Egypt–the place of bondage and familiarity–rather than to stay in the place God has us. You’ve heard the
phrase lie about the grass being greener on the other side.
I used to joke with close friends of mine that familiar spirits (exes I have dated, lol) seem to come out of the woodworks and start calling or texting me when I seemed to be on the edge of a breakthrough or growing deeper in the Lord. It was almost as if it were a distraction or a way to tempt me to go backwards. I laugh now as I think about it, but I firmly believe that there is some truth to this.
And since we are being all the way honest, had it been a different day and time, I may have entertained those familiar spirits, because, well sin is fun and pleasurable, at the time. I can think back to several times where I had already planned in my mind what I was going to do, which was against the Lord, and worked out my own plan of how things were going to go down. Yeah, I may have sought the Lord about it, but in my heart, I already knew what I was going to do and perhaps, may have been secretly looking for His approval of my plan. Ooops…did I step on your toes?
Then we begin to wonder how we end up in messes that could have been avoided, things we may have brought on ourselves, even though we said we “consulted the Lord.” The Lord told Cain, and us, that when we refuse to do what is right, we ought to watch out because “sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you.” (Genesis 4:7)
If you find yourself in one of the above places, let me be the first to tell you: Do not go to Egypt! If you are already headed toward Egypt, let this be a warning for you to turn back! (I wish I would have listened when I was told this prior to getting into a relationship that almost ruined my life!) Don’t go back sis, no matter how hard it may seem right now or how inviting the offer may be. Egypt, man (meaning human beings), this world, and sin really have nothing to offer us and pales in comparison to what God has already given us. Egypt isn’t worth your peace, your protection, or your security in God.
God has promised that if you remain in the place He has you, He will, “will build you up and not tear you down; I will plant you and not uproot you.” (Jeremiah 42:10)
These same 5 words , Do not go to Egypt, are a part of the message the Lord gave to Jeremiah to tell the remnant that had been left in Judah, after many were taken captive into Babylon. Here is exactly what He said:
Listen, you remnant of Judah. The Lord has told you: ‘Do not go to Egypt!’ Don’t forget this warning I have given you today. For you were not being honest when you sent me to pray to the Lord your God for you. You said, ‘Just tell us what the Lord our God says, and we will do it!’ And today I have told you exactly what He said, but you will not obey the Lord your God any better now than you have in the past. So you can be sure that you will die from war, famine, and disease in Egypt, where you insist on going.Jeremiah 42:19-22, NLT
God basically exposed the people’s motives and the fact that they had no intentions of following what He had instructed them to do. They had already purposed in their hearts that they were going to disobey Him. (At least He was nice enough to tell them what would happen if they didn’t listen! Sometimes our parents told us not to do something, but they didn’t always give us the reasons why we shouldn’t.)
The Lord also told them what would be waiting for them in Egypt, if they went back and it wasn’t freedom from war, a call to arms or hunger (v. 14) as they had hoped. Instead, the war and famine they were trying so desperately to escape, would catch up to them and they would die in Egypt, from war, famine, and disease. (v. 15-17). Hello?! The grass is definitely NOT greener in Egypt! If that weren’t enough, God also told them that He would pour out His anger and fury on them and they would “be an object of damnation, horror, cursing, and mockery. ’ (v. 18).
May this not be the case with us. Sis, know that whatever season you find yourself in, no matter how difficult or confusing it may seem right now, stay in the place God has placed you. Seek His face like never before, while you are waiting. Do not go back to Egypt.
As we continue to seek the Lord, even during this journey of waiting, may this be our posture and may it be the true intentions of our heart.
Whether it is pleasing or displeasing, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God…that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the Lord our God.Jeremiah 42:6, NKJV
Scripture references: The Holy Bible (NLT, NKJV)
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