Have you ever faced something really hard? I think all of us have. Sunday night, Keri and I started our drive to a friend’s house near the hospital where our youngest son would have a procedure to repair his heart. It was quiet and I reached over to hold Keri’s hand. Soon I noticed the tears. She said, “I don’t want to do this.” It’s like the feeling of entering dark woods. We knew the next few days would be tough, and we hoped it wouldn’t be as hard as our minds made it, praying we would find the strength to endure. It’s a new avenue of faith we haven’t traversed. We’ve been through a lot but this was different; a new test of our faith.
Imagine the Israelites standing on the edge of the Red Sea as it’s opened for them to cross. The way has been made, all they have to do is trust that God would protect them. What’s behind them is death and destruction coming closer by the minute but what lies ahead is frightening and unknown; the sea floor is rocky and undiscovered by the human foot.
They walk out in faith but don’t think for a second that there weren’t fearful questions. Just because you have doubts doesn’t make you less spiritual, it only means you are human. This is why our faith requires action. You can’t possibly know what God can do through you if it’s all in your head, in theory.
We’re home now. Honestly, we’re absolutely exhausted. Emmett is doing well. He’s unusually calm…another answer to prayer and proof that God is with us. But as we reflect on this season of our journey, we are reminded that God is present in our fears, our worries and interpretations. He made a way for His people across the Red Sea and He makes a way still today.
This morning, Keri read this to me. I pray it finds a fertile place in you today, too.
“Be glad about this, even though it may now be necessary for you to be sad for a while because of the many kinds of trials you suffer. Their purpose is to prove that your faith is genuine. Even gold, which can be destroyed, is tested by fire; and so your faith, which is much more precious than gold, must also be tested, so that it may endure. Then you will receive praise and glory and honor on the Day when Jesus Christ is revealed. You love him, although you have not seen him, and you believe in him, although you do not now see him. So you rejoice with a great and glorious joy which words cannot express, because you are receiving the salvation of your souls, which is the purpose of your faith in him.”
1 Peter 1:6-9 GNB
Walking through the Red Sea with you,
Matt Hastings lives with his wife Keri and their five children in Tullahoma, Tennessee. He is the pastor of the Estill Springs Church of the Nazarene. [Editor’s Note: Matt has graciously allowed us to republish his weekly email devotionals on our site for our readers.]