I am consistently intrigued with the stories of the rescued. Redemption on full display rendered by hope and garnered by grace. Stories where the good wins and the bad is defeated and the rescued meet mercy at just the right moment.
I think we are all hungry for those stories.
Because even though we have the good news, we are also right in the midst living with real people in real situations that are sometimes really really hard. And we long for the encouragement that somewhere, some way, there is a rescue waiting for us.
We long for a route out of Egypt-land that leads us into the promised-land of God’s freedom and grace. And the beauty is that His Word says there is. The Lord is not just our rescuer and our redeemer, but He is our light in the exile and our guide on the journey and our promise for eternity.
I am the Lord your God, Who has brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. – Exodus 20:2
Sometimes I forget when I give way to the burdens and the hardships that are descriptive of this thing we call life. Like when I am sitting in another office with another specialist who is telling me things I already know but I have to follow a process, and it is tedious and draining. Or when in a matter of days every single solitary thing we own breaks down or falls apart and then I forget about a bill that was supposed to be paid last week and the paycheck is already spent. Or when your adult children make choices that go against the very truths you taught them and you have to watch them wrestle and wrangle with loss and hardship when you knew a better way.
Yet, even though it is hard there is a glory in waiting close to the One who is our escape. Even though some things weigh heavy on our souls, there is beauty in the return of the repentant redeemed. Even though the struggle is real, the promise is even more so.
Because the ancient promise has never wavered. The oath of the creator who the Creator who knew our position would need a rescue endured. And endurance is a character trait of God. It is a forever trait He wears well. Every promise rests on the Truth that dwelt with us and carried our sin to the tree held up by nails.
And His fulfilled promises, looking right through the Cross, alway give us a glimpse of grace.
I have been reading through the book of Exodus slowly. Reading about the walkers in the wilderness and the rescue of God’s people from the bondage they escaped. Their journey makes me think of our own prisons, self-built or imposed, that keep us from knowing the freedom God has already provided through the gift of His Son.
And sometimes we can think that the wilderness is a bad place to be, but each return to His Word leaves me with a clearer view of the salvation which sets us free. Because mercy is there and steadfast love holds our hand and redemption is a part of the rescue as we return and repent and rest in God.
For thus said the LORD God, the Holy One of Israel. In returning [to Me] and in resting [in Me] you shall be saved; in quietness and in [trusting] confidence shall be your strength. – Isaiah 30:15
The primary job of the rescued is to trust the rescuer.
That is so easy to say and so hard to do. Yet, deliverance truly comes when we rest in God, when we rest in quiet confidence that He will do exactly what He said He would. Hebrews 11:6 tells us that those who come to God must believe that He is (who he says He is) and that He is a rewarder those who diligently seek him.
Sometimes in our wilderness spaces we lose our way, we forget His faithfulness, we see the obstacle instead of the answer. Sometimes we are so caught up in the grumbling and the regret that we extend our wilderness journey longer than necessary. Sometimes we choose to elevate our trials and our losses rather than the praising the One who brings us out of them.
Because deliverance is working from His perspective…. and our view is one of active rest.
Are you in a wilderness season?
It is sometimes a long slow journey. It is a reflective one but, I believe, it’s meant to be a redemptive one. Because our dark spaces, though we are never alone, lead us to see a little more of the need to repent for putting something ahead of God. Our dusty sin-soaked selves sometimes work against the reward for our disobedience whatever that may be and seek, instead, anything but the presence of the Savior.
Exodus is an example of God working among the people of Israel to prove He has come to dwell with them. It is an answer to the void of Eden, the substitution for our toiling…exchanging His work for our own. He made a way, even in our brokenness and our slavery to the things that break us to show us the escape.
Genesis 3 says we are made of dust. Truthfully, I ingest the soil of my toil in bucket loads a little too frequently. The hole I dig keeps growing as does my ability to forget grace. But John 20:22 says that we receive His spirit as a breath gift and it is enough to blow away the empty dirt we keep gathering.
Grace inhaled leads to liberty with each exhale of rest and faith to trust in the One who looks at the arm span of Christ and calls us worthy, redeemable, His. Because grace is connected to mercy and salvation and redemption, it meets us in the wilderness and points to the promise already fulfilled.
And therefore the Lord [earnestly] waits [expecting, looking and longing] to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show loving-kindness to you. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all those who wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him. – Isaiah 30:18
Every exodus is a road out of slavery, an Egypt escape, into a promise land where grace awaits.
God sets apart our habitation in Himself, but our journey is often through wilderness places and desolate spaces. And maybe the hard things teach us to seek Him more, to learn how to pray more, to lead us to praise Him more. Yet, there is hope as we walk out our faith daily in this journey. We are reminded that trusting Him is always less of a risk than giving into the fear that keeps us bound in chains and bondage.
The thing about waiting in the wilderness is that we are not stationary, but instead we are actively walking with the Lord. In Christ is the safest most void-of-fear place to be.
And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your Teacher will not hid Himself any more, but your eyes will constantly behold your Teacher. And your ears will hear a word behind you, saying, This is the way; walk in it, when you turn to the right hand and when you turn to the left.
In captivity, God protected the life-givers and blessed them because they feared Him and not the king. Israel was abundant and prospered in Egypt so much that they had to be led out by God Himself into the resting of the wilderness and the rescue of redemption.
Our Exodus is a fearless journey for more of God in our midst.
It’s the outlook of Eden, the Journey to the Cross, the heart of the Gospel.
Are you waiting in the wilderness for a rescue?
Don’t be afraid to exit Egypt into the wilderness, because I AM is in the promise and resting in Him is our habitation.
IT’S YOUR TURN TO BE A GRACE COUNTER! SHARE YOUR GRACE MOMENT IN THE COMMENTS BELOW AND THEN COUNT GRACE WITH A FRIEND WITH COMMENT ON A BLOG OR TWO.
If you are a blogger, link up here with a post about finding grace moments in your life or one of your favorite inspiring and encouraging posts from this week. Share your thoughts in the comment section telling me about the #Grace Moments you experienced this week. *(only 1 post per link please)*
Take time to visit your neighbor next to you, and if you want visit a few more friends on the journey. We all need a little encouragement and affirmation as we travel together.
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Each week I will try visit as many of your amazing posts as I can.This is a safe place to sit and dwell in grace together, friends. I can’t wait to pour a cup of friendship with you and take in the grace moments you have to share. Don’t forget to leave a comment below, I love to hear from you.
This is beautiful truth, Dawn. I forget that I am rescued, that I am already operating out of a position of having been delivered while at the same time needing daily deliverance.
We need those old stories.
Thanks for taking us back to that wilderness wandering with all its sign posts of hope.
Thank you, such truths, I have recently come from a wilderness time & it has definitely been a time of celebration… But also moments of great clarity within the wilderness as God revealed new truths.
One of the purposes of wilderness time is to test our hearts to see if we will continue to believe that God is good and faithful to His promises. Bless you, Dawn, for your constant lovely testimony.
Dawn, this is a beautiful, peaceful post. The photos give it a peaceful feel too. Thank you for your honesty. Sharing this on Twitter and Pinterest 🙂
Ugh. I’ve had such trouble getting my comment to post, and then when it finally posted, it was not the right comment! ha. Here’s what I intended to say, Dawn. You can delete the other one to Linda. 🙂
Thanks for sharing this with us, Dawn. Your writing always comes straight from your heart.
“And sometimes we can think that the wilderness is a bad place to be, but each return to His Word leaves me with a clearer view of the salvation which sets us free. Because mercy is there and steadfast love holds our hand and redemption is a part of the rescue as we return and repent and rest in God.” Amen.