I was feeling a little overwhelmed in the middle of the night last night, like being surrounded by a crowd of toddlers all screaming for attention at the same time. They seem particularly over the top at night – what am I going to do, how am I going to do it, how can I possibly get it done, what if I can’t do it. By morning, the crowd usually evaporates like a dream, so real one moment and totally beyond memory in the morning light. What seemed so fearful and overwhelming in the darkness becomes merely a “to do” list by day.
This morning as I was reading my Bible, I was reading about Moses, one of the reluctant leaders whom God had chosen. Moses seemed to have told God, “ok, I did what you said, now what?”
"Why did you ever send me?
...You have not delivered Your people at all."
But the LORD said to Moses,
"Now you shall see what I will do..."
And God said to Moses,
"I am the LORD."
Exodus 5.22, 6. 1-2
We tend to forget those last words…, ”I am the LORD.” God is GOD! And despite the overwhelming circumstances, we will see what only God can do. We should prepare to be astonished. And actually we should be astonished even when we cannot see what is happening, maybe particularly when we cannot see the outcome. Because God is working even when it is beyond our myopic vision.
There is something in us that always wants to find out in stories “how it turns out.” (That is what keeps you reading the next chapter or sticking around through the commercials). And even when we have already figured out what will happen, we want to know how it happens. That is the sense of story within us. Stories are the bearer of truth and the pursuit of meaning. That is why your English teacher had you write so many tedious essays about the hidden symbolism in a book (when all you wanted to do was READ it). Why do we pursue stories? Because we can’t help but know that life is meaningful. Or as author J. Budziszewski says in his book by the same title, “what we can’t not know.” Life is meaningful, because it is wired within us. We are made in the image of God.
Ok, so how does feeling overwhelmed relate to the stories all around us? As the LORD said to Moses, “Now you shall see what I will do…” Stay tuned. God is working in your life. Moses finds out for himself a few chapters from now the amazing things that He can do – the amazing things that only He can do. Even when it seems impossible….and you have the entire Egyptian army gaining on you, God will make a way.