With the New Year, brings an excitement of new goals, new hopes, new dreams, and new growth. We truly emphasize the “New” in the New Year with all these aspirations. But I wonder how many people DO NOT see the New Year with such a welcoming and positive attitude. In fact, for some the New Year is just a continuation of the past. The year before may have brought troubles, woes and sorrows, and this year is starting off with more of the same. Jobs, relationships, finances, health are all just hanging on by a thread. The only thing new is the date and the start of the New Year seems more overwhelming.
But as I was reading the story of Moses that I have read so many times, God revealed to me something new in the spirit of the New Year. The position that Moses was in when the Israelites left Egypt was far from admirable. With Pharaoh’s army behind him and the Red Sea before him and people all around him complaining, he must have felt pressed in all directions and trapped. Not a good position to be in.
Some of us may have started the New Year this way. What was behind was not so good, what lies ahead seems daunting and all around us in chaos. In Exodus 14, we are told that Pharaoh came after the Israelites with 600 of his best chariots. Perhaps some of us feel like we have had an army behind us ready to devour us with no escape in sight.
But, we know how the story ends. Moses parts the Red Sea and the Israelites make it across. Yay! However, we cannot overlook some of the amazing things that scripture tells us in this story. In verse 21 of Exodus 14, “Moses stretched out his hands over the sea and ALL night the Lord drove the sea back.” I truly do believe the timeline here is crucial because in verse 27 Moses stretches his arms over the Red Sea (to close it back) and at DAYBREAK the sea went back. All night, Moses was pressed in all directions. Can you imagine the stress, the anxiety, the heaviness of it all? Perhaps someone’s last year or last few years were like Moses’ all-nighter. But in the midst of it all God was at work all night as well. There is where I draw hope from. In the midst of problems, God is there at work. He is on your side. The daybreak is coming if we trust God and stand firm, but it might be an all-nighterJ.
Have you ever stayed up all night? From my college days of tests and papers to my mommy days of newborns and sick kids, I’ve pulled my share of all nights and let me tell you it is not pleasant. The bags under my eyes, the crankiness in my attitude and the pounding headache can tell you a story of what I’ve survived. But rest assure, God’s Word tells us if you “Commit your way to the Lord; trust him and He will act.(Psalm 37:5 ).“ And in what a mighty way did He act for the Israelites! And I know He wants to act that way for me and you. I don’t know about you, but I love when God uses the most unconventional approach to show His wonder. There is no mistaking His mighty work. He proved who He is, what He does and what His business is. He is in the business of rescuing, protecting and restoring. He proved to the Israelites that “with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26) and I know He wants to show you and me that too.
So, it is time to ditch the New Year, Same Problems attitude that may have plagued your thinking. God sees a New Year….Same Promises!