It was such a quick and passing comment but held such significance. My best friend’s boyfriend said it in a conversation we were all having on the phone. It struck such a chord with me that I honestly thought I could hear the E major of realisation ring within me.
You don’t usually document the days of healing that happens after something doesn’t go exactly to plan but years after, when you’re reminded of it, you see Jesus – our great physician, working out His healing story in our lives. It’s powerful and maybe even a little subtle if you don’t look up to realise it. In that moment I needed someone to remind me that Jesus was still very much in the process of healing me – I just wasn’t paying attention.
In Exodus 15 we follow the Israelite’s journey to the Promised Land. Straight after their victory God sunk chariots filled with angry soldiers that were far from asking politely for their slaves back. They were in serious hot pursuit of their lives. Well, God sank them. With the sea. After that miracle (I’d be buzzing for days) they spent around three whole days in the absolute WILDERNESS. The wilderness ya’ll. There’s some crazy ish out there in the wilderness. You got bugs and you got wild animals. On the third day someone finally pipes up and asks Moses for some water and Moses cries out to the Lord and God showed him a tree.
Let’s just take that in for a second.
You’re praying and pleading God for something to drink and then He leads you to a tree.
I honestly would love to say that I would be 100% a-okay with the tree that God would have given me but in my head I know I would be like…but why? Also what do I do with it, also does it have an icebox filled with cans of coke inside of it. Also, where’s the instructions on this thing and no seriously, what do I do with this foliage? So God literally wants Moses to throw the tree into the water to turn it sweet. God of the Miraculous, He can use absolutely ANYTHING to display His glory even if it looks like you dragging an oak tree into a puddle so that these people can get some sweet sweet water after fleeing from Egypt and being stuck in the wilderness for three days.
There are so many things about this story that I feel like personally, I wouldn’t have responded to as well as Moses did. I seriously admire his obedience and faithfulness. Miracle after miracle you’d think he’d never doubt God’s power ever again. But sometimes it happens. Sometimes we forget His miracles in the everyday. That even our very breath is miraculous in itself. What I’m learning is that every day there is healing that God offers if we choose it. Everyday, we can make choices to accept God as our Great Physician. God’s taking us on a wild journey. Sometimes that looks like three days in the desert with no water, no life, stagnant, confused, frustrated but pressing on anyway. Choosing Him in the everyday leads to moments like this when you will look back to a year ago and realise that healing was happening all along even if you didn’t feel like it was.
At the end of this story after the waters are made sweet and they are finally able to quench their thirst the Lord speaks this to them
“If you diligently heed the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the LORD who heals you.”
In some ways, you could take this as a threat, a way for the Lord to make you listen and obey Him but what I really think it is is a promise. A promise that in loving Him, following Him, in being disciplined and working hard at paying attention to His words and following His path – God’s goodness and provision is there. He knows what’s best for us. We have no idea. This powerful promise extends such grace and mercy on the Israelite’s, a picture of how His intentions towards us are always pure but at the same time helping us realise and understand that yes, the gospel is so black and white and yes it’s so hard and we’re imperfect but let’s not trump what God did on the cross He is so open and ready to forgive us if we confess to Him. He wants for His children to be healed, to be well and yes, it can get so confusing when the healing doesn’t come but have faith, trust in His power and His love to see you through to the other side. The Israelite’s asked for water and God gave them a tree. Sometimes our healing doesn’t always look like we imagined it but God knows what He’s doing.
I know you and I see you
You’re precious to me
I have caught every single tear that you’ve cried over him
and your heartache does not go unnoticed
In the vicious nights where it seems as if your victory is so far out of reach
I am near you
I have you, in the palm of my hands
Come and lay on my chest or beat it out of heartache and anguish if you have to
I don’t mind
Just as long as you come to me
Come to me when your nights are spent laid flat out on your bed, staring at the ceiling
Crying in the dark
Don’t sit with your thoughts for too long
Bring them to Me
This too shall pass
And although you don’t see it yet
I see it
Your victory is coming but first, we have some healing to get through
We have untruths to set right
We have lies that the enemy has told you for too long, to strike down
We have chains that need breaking
We have restoration to go through
Your healing is here