Thursday, November 18, 2021

My Story Matters: Jochebed (an open letter to the mother of Moses)

 By faith Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king’s edict.

Hebrews 11:23

Dear Jochebed,

I admire your courage.  I admire it – because your faith led to great bravery in the face of difficulty.  

What a troublesome season of life!  

I simply can’t imagine hearing on the news one night that a new edict had been signed by the government and would go into practice immediately. 

 I can not fathom what I would do, if, on a whim, my President decided that the best way to slowly, but surely, annihilate all Christians was to kill off every baby boy born to believers?  

What if he enlisted the help of all non-believers, and not just his government officials?  

I'm trying to picture, my non-church-going neighbors walking into my home at will, picking up my sleeping baby boy from his cradle, and pitching him in the closest river.  

I simply can’t envision living with that possibility hanging over my head, especially when my newborn was, in fact, a son.  

That is what you lived with day after day for months; and, yet, the Bible says you were not afraid...

What did you see in Moses that led you to believe he was different?  

Every mother believes her child is perfect.  Yet, you and your husband both recognized something worthy of admiration in him; something that was striking.  

You saw something that led you to believe God had a bigger purpose in store for this man-child, and so you hid him – a word meaning that you took extra careful precaution to safely protect him, as one would an exquisite treasure.  

When he became too active, what gave you the courage to let him go?  

How were you able to hold that little one loosely, and entrust him back to his Heavenly Father?  

Your story speaks to me of a woman who seemed to grasp that the God she served was more than just a creator, but a deliverer.  

Your story makes me believe that you truly knew and trusted the stories that had been passed down from generation to generation among your people.  

There are too many similarities to think otherwise.  

You believed, didn’t you, that God had a purpose for his people, and that He would not let them be destroyed?  

You believed that He would raise up a redeemer to take His people out of Egypt and return them to the land which He promised your forefathers. 

Did you believe that if God had saved the nation once before by putting a righteous man in an ark, that maybe he could use yet another ark, to protect the child you thought He’d selected for such a time as this?  

When you looked at your newborn son, did God whisper, “Treasure this boy, for He is my appointed servant,” into your heart?  

One day I hope to hear your entire story!

Regardless of what you knew and trusted, there was something about little Moses that gave you faith, that led to courage – not necessarily an absence of fear, but an ability to hold him loosely, and let him go.  

So you took him to the very place no one would look - the river.  

You didn’t defy Pharaoh; technically, you put him in the place of death.  

Guarded by his sister, you waited to see what God would do; and God came through.  

In some ways the very thing you died to was returned.  

I pray I will learn from you.  

I pray I will trust that God is always true to his character even (especially) in the midst of impossible circumstances.  

I pray that I will let my faith in you be revealed through my courage.  

I pray that I will learn to hold all things loosely, especially those things that are the closest and dearest to me.  

And, I pray when needed I will let go, allowing You to do what You do best: 

provide miraculous deliverance

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