Devotional - February 2, 2017

Scripture: Exodus 13 & 14 / Mark 14:66-72 / Mark 15: 1-15

Hey guy’s good morning! I am excited because I am writing to you at 5am in the morning. This might not be exciting for you guys, but to me this a big step. I spoke about in my devotional yesterday. The power of obedience and making decisions that will reap lasting fruit. I must admit that it was not easy. I got caught up with work for the website yesterday that lead me to go to sleep a little after mid night, so I basically got a little over 4 hours of sleep; I feel good though. A little water in my face and that did it for me.  

I continued reading this morning more of my bible plan. In today’s passage the Israelite's are approaching the Red Sea and scripture say that the Lord purposely caused the Israelite's to take a detour in their journey. 

Exodus 13:17,18 "When Pharaoh finally let the people go, God did not lead them along the main road that runs through Philistine territory, even though that was the shortest route to the Promised Land. God said, “If the people are faced with a battle, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” So God led them in a roundabout way through the wilderness toward the Red Sea. Thus the Israelite's left Egypt like an army ready for battle."

 God led them down a different path to display his glory to them. Doesn’t that sound like our lives at times? We tend to wonder why or how has life taken me down this path. Most of the time we don’t understand. My wife and I have been dealing with this for the past 38+ weeks. We have been trying to understand the reason for this pregnancy. If you don’t know, Jennifer almost passed away of a rare kidney disease in her first pregnancy, so you can only imagine how afraid and confused we have been. In our minds, we thought we were never going to have another child, especially after going through what we went through, but God had other plans. 

Your greatest struggle can be your greatest worship. Your greatest setback can be your greatest setup. Your greatest pain can be your greatest praise.
— JS

It is funny, but right before we received word of this pregnancy, Jennifer and I were planning our future. We were both discussing the possibility of going back to school to further ourselves. She was deciding between two different careers and I was putting my attention into seminary. About two weeks before we found out that we were pregnant we had dinner with our Pastors and spoke to them about this. Of course, they were thrilled to hear this and were fully supportive, but little did we know a few weeks later we would receive life changing news. Of course, we have been excited about the arrival of our baby, but I would be lying to you if I said that I did not question God’s plan for my life. 

I spoke about this in last week’s videotional, but what we may perceive as a setback can be God’s set up in our lives. I may not fully understand why, but it is not my duty to always know why, my duty is to obey.

God derailed the plans of the Israelite's by causing them to detour and what was perceived at that time as  a “wrong move” by the same Israelite's towards Moses, became there biggest victory and the biggest part of their worship. Your greatest struggle can be your greatest worship. Your greatest setback can be your greatest setup. Your greatest pain can be your greatest praise. God is always at work and always has a plan, let us not forgot that no matter how confusing, difficult and foggy life may get. God will never leave us nor forsake us.

Application Question: What has been your greatest struggle thus far this year? What has been your greatest blessing so far this year?

Tie those things together because is in both. He is working in your good and he is working in your bad. Take some time to reflect and don’t be afraid to ask God why, but be ready to listen.