Walls Of Water

6/11/2019
Since it’s Holy Week, a post honoring Jesus Christ is in order. He’s known by many names and titles that describe his purposes and roles. Here are 50 of them. I pray you’ll read the list slowly, perhaps with your children, and think about who He is for you. I pray, mostly, that He is your Savior and Lord. That you have trusted Him to save you and to be your source of all joy and peace. I had thought of asking you to choose your favorite names or to ask your children to do this. But then I tried. It’s impossible! Because Easter is approaching, I’m drawn to Resurrection and the Life. Then Savior. Deliverer. Immanuel. Our Hope. Sacrifice. Truth. Wonderful Counselor. Every name matters because of how much Jesus matters. If Jesus isn’t your Savior and Lord, or if you’re not sure, I get that. I was once lost, too. Please take a few minutes to read “What is the Gospel?” by my friends at EvanTell. Be blessed as you get to know Jesus better through these 50 names: Advocate – “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father–Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.” 1 John 2:1 Almighty One – “…who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.” Revelation 1:8 Alpha and Omega – “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” Revelation 22:13 Author and Perfecter of Our Faith – “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2 Authority – “Jesus said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.” Matthew 28:18 Beloved Son of God – “And behold, a voice from heaven said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” Matthew 3:17 Bread of Life – “Then Jesus declared, ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.’” John 6:35 Bridegroom – “And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast.” Matthew 9:15 Chief Cornerstone – “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief corner stone.” Psalm 118:22 Deliverer – “And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.” 1 Thessalonians 1:10 The Door – “I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture.” John 10:9 Faithful and True – “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and wages war.” Revelation 19:11 Good Shepherd – “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” John 10:11 Great High Priest – “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.” Hebrews 4:14 Head of the Church – “And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church.” Ephesians 1:22 Holy Servant – “…and grant that Your bond-servants may speak Your word with all confidence, while You extend Your hand to heal, and signs and wonders take place through the name of Your holy servant Jesus.” Acts 4:29-30 I Am – “Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.” John 8:58 Immanuel – “…She will give birth to a son and will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God with us.’” Isaiah 7:14 Indescribable Gift – “Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.” 2 Corinthians 9:15 Judge – “…he is the one whom God appointed as judge of the living and the dead.” Acts 10:42 King of Kings – “These will wage war against the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, because He is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those who are with Him are the called and chosen and faithful.” Revelation 17:14 Lamb of God – “The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29 Light of the World – “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12 Lion of the Tribe of Judah – “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.” Revelation 5:5 Lord of All – “For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:9-11 Mediator – “For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.” 1 Timothy 2:5 Messiah – “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ).” John 1:41 Mighty One – “Then you will know that I, the Lord, am your Savior, your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.” Isaiah 60:16 One Who Sets Free – “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36 Our Hope – “…Christ Jesus our hope.” 1 Timothy 1:1 Peace – “For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,” Ephesians 2:14 Prophet – “And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” Mark 6:4 Redeemer – “And as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last He will take His stand on the earth.” Job 19:25 Resurrection and the Life – “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die.” John 11:25 Risen Lord – “…that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.” 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 Rock – “For they drank from the spiritual Rock that followed them, and the Rock was Christ.” 1 Corinthians 10:4 Sacrifice for Our Sins – “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” 1 John 4:10 Savior – “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:11 Son of Man – “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:10 Son of the Most High – “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David.” Luke 1:32 Supreme Creator Over All – “By Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities– all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.…” 1 Corinthians 1:16-17 True Vine – “I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.” John 15:1 Truth – “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32 Victorious One – “To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne.” Revelation 3:21 The Way – “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6 Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace – “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 The Word – “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” John 1:1

This week we welcome Courtney Critz! Courtney Critz is a bookworm, lover of travel and teaching, and people-loving introvert. She is the wife of a techie entrepreneur, homeschooling mom of 7 kids, ages 2-15, and works with a team of over 100,00+ families in a health and wellness business she never, ever expected to be running right from her home. Her heart is for women and families to experience freedom in every area of life! We know you will enjoy getting to know Courtney.

 

WALLS OF WATER

 

 

I’m pretty sure all of my blog posts start out the same way. Nothing earth shattering. I’m simply sitting with my kids doing something normal, and suddenly the thoughts in my head turn to something that longs to pour out of me onto paper. It’s a fairly bizarre feeling and one that keeps me awake if I don’t let it out. So I do. This post is no different. It began with the simple reading of a Bible story on a normal morning with my kids. They had chosen to read about Moses and the Red Sea. You know that one? Of course! Egyptians,plagues, finally the Israelite's get to leave, slight problem in the form of an entire sea in their way, God parts the water and they walk through, Egyptians drown. Yay! Right? But I’m reading and looking at this childish illustration of the walls of water on either side of the Israelite's and my heart was struck.

 

IN ORDER TO GET WHERE GOD WANTS US, WE OFTEN HAVE TO WALK THROUGH TOWERING WALLS OF WATER.

 

I tried to imagine the rushing sound of that enormous body of water as it completely went against its natural course and split in two. As the people watched dry land appear where before there were only waves.I’m sure it was majestic and awesome and they were deeply grateful. But then they had to walk through it. Put one sandal foot in front of the other and trust that the God they had just seen take down a country plague by plague was not going to let that water fall down on them. That they could trust Him after years of slavery. That the very method of their rescue wasn’t going to turn into their demise. Was He on their side? This would be an easy way to take the mount. They could all get in the middle of that sea and die there. And I wonder if this wasn’t part of the reason they had just spent a large portion of time and energy on the feast of Passover. On the consecration of the firstborn to God. On physical, embedded reminders that He was their God and they were His people. So they could begin to trust the One who built a wall of water on the right and on the left and choose to put one sandal foot in front of the other.

 

And then I pictured them clutching children close as they walked through. Part adrenaline rush and belief in the power of a God who could do this, part terror that perhaps He wasn’t as concerned for their children’s safety as they were. Probably many miles of muttering under their breath,“Please, God. Please. You promised us the land. You promised us freedom from Pharaoh. You promised these children that they would be your descendants and would conquer.” It would have been a long journey of resting on the promises.But again, they had just spent an entire feast being reminded of the promises of God to them and to their children.

 

Once on the other side, as the realization sunk in that everyone had made it through safely, I think the knees would start shaking.Then, just as they were breathing a sigh of relief and wondering if perhaps God had simply made permanent walls of water and there was nothing to be afraid of,they would have seen Pharaoh and the entire Egyptian army enter that sea,confident that if Israel had slowly made it through, so could they in their sleek chariots pulled by fine horses. And the relief would have turned to a twinge of fear because they looked so powerful, so confident charging between those walls. Pursuing Israel with all the bluster and deceptive authority the Enemy can muster in those situations. And just as quickly as they felt the fear, a mixture of gratitude and horror took over as the walls came crashing down. On the right and on the left the kind of overpowering momentum only a massive body of water can produce. Covering an entire nation’s army. One of the greatest world powers. Gone.

 

I’m pretty sure at that point I might have vomited. From the exhaustion, fear, hope, awe, horror, and extreme gratitude of the moment.No glamour. Dirty, tired, but full of belief.

 

UNBELIEVABLY GLAD I WASN’T ON THE OTHER SIDE. THAT I WAS ON THE SAME TEAM AS THIS GOD WHO COMMANDED THE SEA AND THE WAVES.

 

I don’t know about you but I rarely receive a call to go charging down a mountain on a horse “Man from Snowy River” style in my walk with God. But, boy, have I logged some miles with walls of water on the right and on the left. No way to pretend it was me accomplishing the salvation. Noway to act like I wasn’t equally excited and terrified of where this was leading. It’s hard to do a showy walk on dry ground through a Red Sea lugging all that you own. Fairly impossible to look impressive when there are walls of water on the right and on the left. No way to do anything but put one foot in front of the other and let God bring us out of our slavery.

 

And I think our challenge will always lie in our mental and spiritual battle. Where is our focus? Am I looking at the walls of water –overwhelming, giant, insurmountable, dangerous, unpredictable, uncontrollable?Or are my eyes on the DRY GROUND THAT JUST SHOWED UP IN A SEA? The walls are so tall, but with a slight shift in focus the true miracle is beneath my feet. Dry ground. Simple dirt. A humble path from a God who rescues and saves. Not a yellow brick road that leads to a happily ever after. Believe me, we’ll all know when the happily ever after shows up. We’ll all be on our faces before Him. But for now, that seemingly humble path of dirt with lots of miles, and a desert, and some manna, and a bunch of quail, and a thirst-quenching rock, and eventually a Promised Land where we’re a part of His plan stretches on and I don’t know what’s next. Just one foot in front of the other. Clutching those I love close and whispering the promises God made to us. “You said we were yours.You said to go here. You said you would provide.” And He has. And He does. And He will.

 

I believe we must make it a priority to celebrate“Passovers” and dedicate ourselves continuously so that we are grounded firmly.Eyes in front. We are so quick to look back at what is known, even if it was slavery, and to be willing to stay in it. To think we would be happier if He would only leave us alone to do our thing. The thing that previously we were begging to leave. We beg for deliverance and then He says, “Move on!” How many times do we ask Him over and over and over what we should do next when we know good and well what we are supposed to do next! Walk on the path that is before us. The one we can’t control. The one we may not have chosen. The one with the scary unknown walls of water to the right and to the left. His patience cannot be comprehended by our finite minds. Thank God He doesn’t ask us for perfect faith and flawless performance. Thank God He accepts dusty feet…right, left,right, left. The battle belongs to the Lord.

 

As Pharaoh approached, the Israelite's looked up, and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified and cried out to the Lord. They said to Moses,“Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn’t we say to you in Egypt, ‘Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians’? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!” Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelite's to move on.Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelite's can go through the sea on dry ground.

 

You know what I want? I want to be the Israelite standing a little ways away from the crowd. The one with my mouth shut and my heart open. The one not using all my energy to complain that God rescued me from slavery, not telling Moses what he should be doing, not telling God what He should be doing, so that my ears might be the first to hear it. First a gurgling, then a swishing, then a rushing, then a deafening roar as the sea of my imprisonment does the bidding of a great God.

 

Our walls of water will always be moving, changing,rushing. Mine will be different than yours. Fear of a positive pregnancy tester a negative one. Fear of a spouse coming home or not coming home. Fear of waiting another year on a call that a child can be brought home, or fear that tomorrow the call will come and we will not be ready for the drastic life change ahead. Fear that there will not be enough, fear that we will be engulfed by the too much that is drowning and choking our society. Fear that there won’t be a tomorrow, fear that there will. Fear that there will be a diagnosis, fear that there won’t. Your wall will not be my wall, but the God who will hold those walls up and keep them from engulfing us? He is the Same yesterday,today, and forever.

 

Praying that I will always see the miracle in dry, dusty ground in front of me. Praying that my feet will always keep moving one in front of the other. Praying that I tune my ears to hear the first ripples of His plans. Because that dry, dusty path through the walls of water is going to lead to the Promised Land of hope and purpose as children of the King, and I don’t want to be waiting in my supposed safety on the other side.