When we think of a broken family our minds wander to divorce, or death, or maybe adoption by choice. But what if God, in His sovereignty, permits pieces of brokenness in our lives to preserve our future or the future of a generation to come? Can we truly embrace a Romans 8:28 lifestyle even in times of brokenness? Moses did. Brokenness that was out of his control led to the saving of a nation.
Without a doubt, Moses is one of the great figures of the Bible. His name is mentioned from the book of Exodus to Revelation. He is listed in the heroes of faith chapter in Hebrews. He is placed on the same list as Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. He was used by God to do wonderful works.
Most of us know about Moses’ leading his people through the wilderness. That was a great and productive part of his life, but many do not know God used Moses to write the first five books of the Old Testament. Moses was a great servant of God and there are many facets to his long and honorable life.
This was not an automatic thing, instead, it was the result of the deliberate choices Moses made. Moses was born into trying and difficult circumstances. Times that were out of his control. Out of his parents’ control. His parents were under a cruel law that forced them to seek refuge for their baby. Moses was in grave danger.
Jochebed, Moses’ mother, did not obey the cruel law. She hid her baby boy for three months. When she realized that his discovery was on the horizon, she pieced together a plan to put the baby in a little homemade boat and place him in the river, near where the pharaoh’s daughter came to bathe.
Pharaoh’s daughter found this baby and called him Moses. His name means “taken from the water.” We can see that Moses’ parents acted in faith and they did not know how things would work out but by faith anticipated their little boy would be well cared for. They had to trust God during a trying time of separation. Faith and trust in God are the only way to thrive during a time of separation.
At that very moment, Moses’ family became a broken family. His parents gave him up to save his life. Moses grew up in the palace of Egypt. When he reached a mature age, or as the Bible says, “come to years”, he made a deliberate choice to identify himself with the people of God.
Moses’ choice like all our choices, was to turn away from one thing and turn to another. A recurring theme all through the Bible is that when we make one choice, we exclude all other choices: the positive over the negative, the holy over the evil.
We must choose truth. God’s truth. We can deal with truth, even when we might not want to. We must never deal with the grey areas of dishonesty. And no matter where we are in life, if we are dealing with interruptions due to a broken family, we must choose to identify ourselves with the people of God and His ways in whatever circumstance we find ourselves. Surround yourself with truth and with his people. Draw strength from a godly community. Draw hope from Christian counseling. Even Moses had Aaron.
By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden for three months by his parents, because they saw that the child was beautiful, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict. By faith Moses, when he was grown up, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. He considered the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he was looking to the reward.
By faith he left Egypt, not being afraid of the anger of the king, for he endured as seeing him who is invisible. By faith he kept the Passover and sprinkled the blood, so that the Destroyer of the firstborn might not touch them. By faith, the people crossed the Red Sea as on dry land, but the Egyptians, when they attempted to do the same, were drowned. – Hebrews 11:23-29
Take a deep breath, slow down and seek discernment, and remember, the moment of choice is also the moment of danger and the moment of crisis, especially during trying times of separation. Once we decide to do a certain thing or to go down a certain path, we will find it difficult to change our minds. So, steady your heart and direct your affections to things above.
This is why the Bible emphasizes over and over that we choose to serve the Lord while we are young, but let’s not forget this deliberate act early on while we are going through the thicket. Moses was drawn from the water, passed from his own parents’ arms into the arms of a stranger, and God allowed it to preserve him. Even while growing up separated, he eventually came to age and chose to go with God’s people. In the middle of our trying times, we must do so, too.
Moses’ choice that he made would have consequences throughout his life. It is not wrong to say the rest of his life was guided and shaped by that one choice he made as a young man. If he had made a different choice, we might never have heard of him.
He could have lived his years on earth in grand palaces and there would have been little notice of his life. Because he chose to honor and obey God, he was used greatly of God and he became a hero of faith to the generations that followed.
Undoubtedly, the choice to serve and to follow the Lord in any circumstance is always the best. We may have to give up some things to follow the Lord, but we earn an eternal reward in the process. We must earnestly contend for the faith, even in separation.
We must purpose in our hearts to make choices, and most importantly to make right, deliberate choices. Moses’ legacy began with one deliberate choice, all the while he was in the midst of adversity, cruelty, and separation.
Moses not only made a choice, but he also acted on the choices he had made. His decision was not just intellectual. He left Egypt and for 40 years was a nomadic shepherd. He was an honest and upright man. God never forgot about the choice Moses had made as a young man.
When Moses was about eighty years old, God appeared to him and sent him back from where he was called, back to Egypt. He was to gain the release of his people from bondage. Through faith in God, Moses was able to accomplish that, and the real purpose of his life was revealed in the events in the book of Exodus. Moses followed God back into Egypt, and he followed God all through the years of his wandering.
No matter what season of life you are in, you can choose to serve the Lord even in times of separation from your loved one. Divorce, adoption, a job relocation, a missionary call, military service, or even death cannot separate you from the love and care of God. Separation is hard. It’s a grief of this life but take heart! At eighteen or eighty, continue in faith! God will go before you. He will sustain you. You can thrive.
It is one thing to make a choice, but it’s quite another to live out our lives based on choice. Moses did both. This does not mean he never did anything wrong, or he never became discouraged in all his years of serving the Lord. It does mean his life was guided by the decision he made!
God used Moses to do important things, and he was a hero to his people for years after he died. God honored Moses, and it all began with the choice he made, a choice in a time of separation and uncertainty. A choice. Your choice. Today, choose God.
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“Lego Lady”, Courtesy of Jackson Simmer, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Moses”, Courtesy of Levi Meir Clancy, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Open Bible”, Courtesy of Shelby Miller, Unsplash.com, CC0 License; “Therapist”, Courtesy of Annie Spratt, Unsplash.com, CC0 License