He Will Fight For You - Encouragement for Today - February 7, 2018

Jefferson Bethke

February 7, 2018
He Will Fight For You
JEFFERSON BETHKE

“The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.” Exodus 14:14 (ESV)

I was 19 at the time. I’d been following Jesus for a few months, and I remember starting to get angry. At God.

I gave my life to You … why is it still falling apart?

I thought You were supposed to make my life easier.

Why does some part of me still want to do the things I don’t want to do anymore?

I never would’ve said it publicly, but I held some serious resentment and disillusionment toward God.

Sadly, it wasn’t because of anything He’d done or said. In fact, it was a lot of religious baggage and ideas I had picked up along the way that were the reason for the resentment.

Growing up and going to church here and there, I always thought the people who went on stage during testimony services had it all together. Or at least, they did once they started following Jesus! They’d say things like, “I was an alcoholic for 40 years. Then, I gave my life to Jesus and have never wanted a drink since.”

I’d sink lower in my chair because what about me? In some ways life actually got harder after I started following Jesus. I now felt conflicted. I felt woken up to a battle of sorts. Was there something wrong with me?

I remember being in this season and reading the Exodus story in a fresh new way. I’d heard it tons growing up, but sometimes that’s a good reason to miss the true heart of a passage. Yet, at that time, one verse particularly stuck out.

It was right after the Israelites were freed for the final time and began to leave Egypt and Pharaoh’s rule.

That’s when they got to the Red Sea. And they started to feel the impossible ahead of them. To make matters worse, they turned around and saw Pharaoh chasing them. He had changed his mind about letting them go.

A sea in front of them, and an army behind them. They were trapped. And they began to curse and hurl harsh words at Moses: Did you bring us out here to die?! We could’ve stayed in Egypt to do that! (Exodus 14:11)

That’s when my favorite verse shows up. Moses responds:“The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to be silent” (Exodus 14:14).

I really try to feel Israel’s plight, but I can’t imagine how it felt. The terror. The fear. Completely shut in and stuck. Moses tells Israel they do have to do something. They do have a job. To get through this they need to obey. And the command they need to obey? Be quiet and watch God work. Have true faith in the One who brought them out of slavery.

I don’t know what you’re facing today, but what would it look like to stop and trust in your Creator? He didn’t get you this far to leave you out to dry. God goes before you and after you. He will fight for you.

My favorite part about this story is that after God opens up the Red Sea, Israel is commanded to walk. Sometimes being silent and trusting God looks like putting one foot in front of the other while towers of water are on your left and your right. But He is good, and He can be trusted.

Lord, I pray for the situation today of each person reading this. I pray You would give them the same hope and strength and reminder of Your promises as You did to your people next to the Red Sea. That You would calm their heart and still their soul with Your truth and with Your voice. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Proverbs 20:22, “Do not say, ‘I will repay evil’; wait for the LORD, and he will deliver you.” (ESV)

Jeremiah 51:36, “Therefore thus says the LORD,
‘Behold, I am going to plead your case
And exact full vengeance for you;
And I will dry up her sea
And make her fountain dry.’” (NASB)

RELATED RESOURCES:
What is love and marriage designed to be like? Experience God’s purpose in marriage through biblical teaching and personal storytelling — from two completely different backgrounds: Jeff Bethke’s “Prodigal Son” past and his wife Alyssa’s “True Love Waits” experience, coming together as one. Get your copy of Love That Lasts: How We Discovered God’s Better Way for Love, Dating, Marriage, and Sex, including a digital version of the first six chapters, here.

CONNECT:
Jeff would love to connect with you! Come say hi at jeffandalyssa.com.

Enter to WIN a copy of Love That Lasts by Jefferson and Alyssa Bethke. In celebration of this book, Nelson Books is giving away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We'll randomly select 5 winners and email notifications to each one, by Monday, February 12, 2018.}

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What area do you need to be “silent” in and let God fight for you? What “Pharaoh” is chasing you?

© 2018 by Jefferson Bethke. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries thanks Nelson Books for their sponsorship of today's devotion.

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