Then the Lord said, “I have observed the misery of my people who are in Egypt; I have heard their cry on account of their taskmasters. Indeed I know their sufferings.”Exodus 3:7
Since the birth of our son, Jessica and I have been hearing a lot of crying. It is Jamie’s way of alerting us to something he needs. Either he is hungry, he is cold, he is hot, he has the hiccups, he needs his diaper changed, or maybe he is bored and needs to be rocked. I have to admit, for years I have been listening to babies cry at church, on planes, at family functions and I just ignored those cries. It makes perfect sense, they weren’t my children but when Jamie cries, I am there immediately trying to find the source of his tears. Even in the dead of night, his cry wakes me from the deepest of sleep and once I get my bearings, I get to work to comfort him.
This passage from Exodus reveals a God that not only listens to our cries but one that knows our suffering and does something about it. God is there immediately trying to find the source of our tears. Think about that. It is really powerful if you stop and reflect on the tears of your past, or the hardships you may be enduring right now. God listens and knows! God understands and empathizes like a loving parent. Thanks be to God!
In the exodus story, the source of suffering is Pharaoh and the Egyptian empire that forced slavery on God’s children. God listened to their cries and pursued liberation for them from their situation of oppression. Beginning on August 23, I will be preaching a four part sermon series following the exodus narrative from slavery to freedom, focusing on God’s liberating work. While there is certainly an individual notion of liberation, scripture always ties individual liberation to the wider liberation of the community. You can’t have one without the other, and that is what I will be focusing on. I invite you to join us for worship to think about God’s liberative activity in our world today!
Until then, may you find time to spend with your God who listens and knows your cries and does not rest until you are made whole. May you experience God’s peace in your life this day. Amen.
Blessings for your journey,