Sunday’s reading from the Hebrew scriptures (Exodus 1:8-2:10) recounts the story of the birth and rescue of Moses. Consider some ironies that emerge from that story.
The very river in which Moses was to be drowned bore him to safety.
Whenever God is at work in our life, the instruments of our undoing can be transformed into the means of our salvation. That theme is repeated in the lives of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. And look at what God did with the cross!
Moses realized later in his life that he had been spared (drawn out) for a purpose - to draw out others and lead them to freedom in the land God had promised to their ancestors.
Does God do this only for very special leaders? Certainly. However, each of us has survived the waters of baptism and been drawn out so that we can fulfill a divine purpose. We have been drawn out to be a kingdom of priests and God has a special role for each of us.
There is no pursuit in life more important than finding out what God wants to do with you!
Moses grew up in the court of the one who sought to kill him.
How ironic that the princess should bring a son of the Israelites whom the king had ordered killed right into the palace and name him “son.”
How ironic that Jesus should survive a similar slaughter shortly after his birth, by being taken into Egypt by his parents, and become the savior of the world, the Son of God.
How ironic that you and I manage to grow up under the very nose of so many forces that threaten to retard our growth or enslave us. It would be so easy to never grow up, like Peter Pan. By the grace of God, we can and do grow up in spite of external and internal forces that suggest that life would be better if we remained immature.
When we believe in God and the self God has given a home in our bodies, we just have to grow up, regardless of whatever forces conspire to keep us from growing up, because not to grow is to die.
The will of God was at work in Moses’ life in spite of the will of Pharaoh.
Things could have turned out differently for Moses. But God’s will for his life was stronger than Pharaoh’s or anybody’s.
The story of the Exodus makes it clear that Moses was the instrument of the divine will. It was God who made the escape of the Hebrews from their Egyptian captors possible.
On their journey, whenever Moses or the Hebrews attempted to assert their own wills over God’s will, things did not go well and their progress toward the Promised Land was impeded.
God’s will is strong for us too. We have to seek it daily over and above our own will. Like Jacob, we must struggle in prayer as we seek to blend our wills with God’s.
It is ironic how God delivered Moses, how Moses delivered God’s people, and how God is able to deliver us so that we may grow and blend our wills with the divine will in spite of all sorts of forces around us. That irony makes it all the more wonderful because it is a sign to us that God is still at work, doing more with us than we can do with ourselves.