Moving Forward – Just keep moving forward
I have pushed you on some things that can push back so I want to share with you a story from the Bible about a time when people trusted the Lord and they got some push back from it
The Australian coat of arms pictures two creatures–the emu, a flightless bird, and the kangaroo.
The animals were chosen because they share a characteristic that appealed to the Australian citizens. Both the emu and kangaroo can move only forward, not back. The emu’s three-toed foot causes it to fall if it tries to go backwards, and the kangaroo is prevented from moving in reverse by its large tail.
Those who truly choose to follow Jesus become like the emu and kangaroo, moving only forward, never back
Then the Lord gave these instructions to Moses: 2 “Order the Israelites to turn back and camp by Pi-hahiroth between Migdol and the sea. Camp there along the shore, across from Baal-zephon. 3 Then Pharaoh will think, ‘The Israelites are confused. They are trapped in the wilderness!’ 4 And once again I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chase after you. I have planned this in order to display my glory through Pharaoh and his whole army. After this the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord!” So the Israelites camped there as they were told. 5 When word reached the king of Egypt that the Israelites had fled, Pharaoh and his officials changed their minds. “What have we done, letting all those Israelite slaves get away?” they asked. 6 So Pharaoh harnessed his chariot and called up his troops. 7 He took with him 600 of Egypt’s best chariots, along with the rest of the chariots of Egypt, each with its commander. 8 The Lord hardened the heart of Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, so he chased after the people of Israel, who had left with fists raised in defiance. 9 The Egyptians chased after them with all the forces in Pharaoh’s army—all his horses and chariots, his charioteers, and his troops. The Egyptians caught up with the people of Israel as they were camped beside the shore near Pi-hahiroth, across from Baal-zephon.
1) Helpless Situation–causes us to feel like moving backward
They are entangled in the land, the wilderness has shut them in
• Reasons not to move forward with life stems from – Fear
– Inactivity – haven’t spent time in the word, prayer, fellowship with other believer’s
– Inexperience – we are in a place we have never been before, it seems impossible even though God lead us here
– Inability – I can’t do it, everything from your past hits at once and tells you of you inability rather than God’s ability
• Seems like a mistake following the leadership of God – look for people to blame because you feel as if you are trapped
Romans 8:31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us?
Exodus 14: 10-14
As Pharaoh approached, the people of Israel looked up and panicked when they saw the Egyptians overtaking them. They cried out to the Lord, 11 and they said to Moses, “Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness? Weren’t there enough graves for us in Egypt? What have you done to us? Why did you make us leave Egypt? 12 Didn’t we tell you this would happen while we were still in Egypt? We said, ‘Leave us alone! Let us be slaves to the Egyptians. It’s better to be a slave in Egypt than a corpse in the wilderness!’”
2) Desperate Cry– something we naturally do when we feel trapped
Pharaoh approached, the people of Israel looked up and panicked….. Pharaoh and they were sore afraid: …. and …. They cried out to the Lord
• Followed in obedience – they had done nothing wrong yet they seemed to be trapped, the trusted the Lord and the leadership
• Yet seems worst off then before verses 11-12 – we tend to look at things through the eyes of right now and our abilities and our wants and desires rather than God’s if God is leading you can bet he has a better plan
13 But Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. 14 The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
3) Perfect Confidence– when we are in the battle of change to become everything the Lord has called us to be we have to remember that all kinds of things will fight us….that just goes to prove to us we are on the right track…our confidence, like Moses’ must be in the Lord. That is where faith kicks in
• Christ is a present help in the time of trouble
Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble
• He knows how to deliver –
Joshua 1:9 This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
• He will fight for you – hold your peace…Romans 8:31 from above and
Psalm 44:5 Through You we will push down our enemies; Through Your name we will trample those who rise up against us.
4) The decision to Trust– Exodus 14:15-18
And the Lord said to Moses, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. 16 But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea. 17 And I indeed will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall follow them. So I will gain honor over Pharaoh and over all his army, his chariots, and his horsemen. 18 Then the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord, when I have gained honor for Myself over Pharaoh, his chariots, and his horsemen.”
…. go forward – there comes a point when as Nike says, we have to “Just do it” we realize God has brought us to this point and we have got to choose to trust him then we take action
• There is a part that they and I have to do – remember the disciples with feeding the 30K people Jesus said “you feed them”
• Impossibilities lets God work
• His work is always forward
• Defeat or victory lay in their hands
• Obedience gives the victory
Many stories in scripture show us how God goes before those who trust Him…it was a trust in so many ways…I mean I would have been saying God you’re going to allow Pharaoh to do what?
5) Perfect Protection– when we trust God he then does all that he has promised to do….see we do have a part in faith
19 And the Angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud went from before them and stood behind them. 20 So it came between the camp of the Egyptians and the camp of Israel. Thus it was a cloud and darkness to the one, and it gave light by night to the other, so that the one did not come near the other all that night.
– His presence promised for us – he will never leave us or forsake us even when we fail he does not fail
– Impossible Deliverance – it would not have been my way of doing it perhaps not your way either but the Lord had a couple million people to get through the sea
Exodus 14:21 – 27
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were divided. 22 So the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. 23 And the Egyptians pursued and went after them into the midst of the sea, all Pharaoh’s horses, his chariots, and his horsemen. 24 Now it came to pass, in the morning watch, that the Lord looked down upon the army of the Egyptians through the pillar of fire and cloud, and He troubled the army of the Egyptians. 25 And He took off their chariot wheels, so that they drove them with difficulty; and the Egyptians said, “Let us flee from the face of Israel, for the Lord fights for them against the Egyptians.” 26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea, that the waters may come back upon the Egyptians, on their chariots, and on their horsemen.” 27 And Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and when the morning appeared, the sea returned to its full depth, while the Egyptians were fleeing into it. So the Lord overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.
• Salvation is all of God’s doing – God will always come through as we trust him
• Waves held back until all the redeemed passed over
• Jesus is the way
Can you imagine the Israelites believing the Egyptian army would be destroyed with out weapons and by the very thing that brought them deliverance, the parted sea!
When we trust God we have to really trust him. He doesn’t always reveal his plans for us completely but when we learn to trust him, no matter how bad things may look from our perspective or point of view, God always has a great plan
• Have you experienced victory over the impossible?
You may get push back from the moving forward but God hasn’t created us to move backward, like the emu and the kangaroo we have been designed to move forward to change the world and to become all he has called us to be…you are so much more than you are right now you have been created for far more than you are and God doesn’t want you to settle to do the change he has called you to don’t be afraid of the push back, Godhas you and has greatness in your future, fulfillment in your future, destiny and purpose fulfilled in your future…you are also just getting to know and understand His love for you, grow with it