Wednesday, December 8

The Same God.

Read: Exodus 14:1-27

While reading from the Storybook Bible to my kids, I was reminded that the God I worship today is the same God in the well-loved Old Testament stories: Noah, Jonah, David and Goliath, Daniel in the Lions Den, and Moses and the Red Sea. Impressive to children, but I need to be impressed too. How could I think for even a moment that God is not up to any of the challenges in my little life?

“In front of them was a big sea. It was so big there was no way around it. But there was no way through it – it was too deep. They didn’t have any boats so they couldn’t sail across. And they couldn’t swim across because it was too far and they would drown. And they couldn’t turn back because Pharaoh was chasing them. They could see the flashing swords now, glinting in the baking sun, and the dust clouds, and chariot after scary chariot surging towards them. So they did the only things there was left to do – PANIC!

 “We’re gong to die!” they shrieked.
“Don’t be afraid!” Moses said.
“But there’s nothing we can do!” they screamed.
“God knows you can’t do anything!” Moses said. “God will do it for you. Trust him. And watch!”
“But there’s no way out!” they cried.
“God will make a way!” Moses said.
Another minute and it would have been over. But then the strangest thing happened. God made a pillar of smoke. It moved behind his people and hid them from the Egyptians. Then God sent a strong east wind to blow all night long. It blew on the water of the big sea. It blew it to the left and blew it to the right, until it blew it into two towering walls of water, and there – right through the middle of the sea – a pathway opened.
And God’s people walked across on dry land.
When the Egyptians tried to follow, the walls of water crashed back down on them and swallowed them up. And God’s people were safe.

(The Storybook Bible: every story whispers his name, by Sally Lloyd-Jones)

I know a present-day miraculous story. It happened all without the notice of the whole world, but it is the same God. It is the story of a little baby boy who had breathing trouble from his first moments outside the womb. Instead of his mother’s arms, he was put on a ventilator and transported to the intensive care unit at a big-city hospital. His parents rushed to his bedside and could only watch as procedures and medications were pummeled at his tiny body in hopes to save him.  Through the first few hours there were times that it seemed his little life was over. Family and friends were praying vigilantly for a miracle.

A sleeping room was provided for the baby’s exhausted parents and was located a few blocks away, down a couple elevators, and a bunch of long hallways, and up some more elevators at the top floor in a hot high-rise. Only when their baby boy’s condition was stable, did the couple leave for much needed rest. With cell phones poised for any needed notifications, they collapsed into sleep.

Meanwhile, the baby was losing his fight. He stopped breathing all together. Immediately the intensive care team sprang into action and someone went to call the baby’s parents. They tried resuscitating him over and over again, to no avail. Where were the parents? It was the hospital’s policy to continue efforts until the parents could be reached… so they could say goodbye to their baby. But the parent’s weren’t answering. The high-rise apartment’s loud air conditioning system drowned out all sounds from the phones. 

Finally a nurse was sent to get them… the minutes ticked by. 15, 20, 30 minutes. Groggy and panicked parents rushed from sleep to death’s door as they were told their baby was not going to make it. Between the few blocks away, a couple elevators, and a bunch of long hallways, and some more elevators, God’s power was at work. The God who held back an entire sea for stranded Israelites, breathed life into tiny lungs and held back time so his parents could witness a miracle. The baby’s heart started beating on its own and his lungs filled with air 41 minutes after all hope seemed lost. His parents didn’t have to say goodbye. That baby is now a walking, talking, silly, vibrant toddler.

The children’s songs we pass off as “cute” and “fun” hold the most powerful truths. “I’m in the Lord’s Army,” “ God is So Good,” “Trust and Obey,” “The B-I-B-L-E,” “He’s God the Whole World in His Hands,” and “My God Is So Great.” We often forget about this all-powerful God as we live our regular lives. It’s not daily we need a Red Sea parted or a baby brought back to life, so we don’t think of God’s power at all. “My God is so great, so strong and so mighty, there’s nothing my God cannot do.” Nothing is too small for God. He cares about little things and big things. And I'm impressed again and again.

Written by Alysun

(The story I referred to in this post is about my nephew Jamin, born in July of '09. Jamin is 2 months older than my son and my world was completely rocked when I heard that Jamin "might not make it." His life has impacted many, as our faith was increased during our weeks of prayer for him while in the NICU. We are so thankful for his miraculous life and are reminded now every day that God is SO big.)

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