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June 2018 – Are you paying attention? Now is the Time to Make Amends Before it’s Too Late

Are you paying attention? Now is the Time to Make Amends Before it’s Too Late

Back on Feb. 1, I read in Exodus again about some of the various plagues that God brought to bear against Pharaoh and the Egyptian people.

Strike seven was the hail. You think those in Egyptian leadership would have understood after six intensive plagues that Pharaoh, after consulting with his advisors, would have unequivocally let the Hebrew people go.

Negative. Who would make bricks and do hard labor tasks for Pharaoh if he let “all” of them go into the wilderness three days for a party?

I can’t imagine being hit with 100-pound rocks of ice from the sky but that is what is recorded in some translations of this passage. The ice boulders came nevertheless and destroyed those who didn’t heed the warning from Moses and his brother Aaron. Crops, trees, livestock and all the laborers were annihilated if they were not instructed to take cover.

All of Pharaoh’s servants who had respect for God’s word got their workers and animals under cover as fast as they could, but those who didn’t take God’s word seriously left their workers and animals out in the field. Exodus 9:20-21, MSG.

Those who obeyed and those who didn’t, stuck a chord with me.

Even though Pharaoh’s heart was hardened by God, some of the Egyptians accepted the advice. They feared God and they took action to avert loss and tragedy. They believed Moses and Aaron and, as such, at least their servants’ lives and the lives of their animals were spared.

Some people naturally pay attention and others do not. Heeding warnings or specific instructions from those in authority, like God, is up to each one of us. No matter what the directive is, we can either believe it and become obedient or we can disregard what is offered and sooner or later suffer the consequences because of our failure to act.

I was encouraged that some of the Egyptian people feared God and took the appropriate steps to save life and property. Maybe some of them even believed in God — probably most did not — but it indicates that they respected what was spoken as if the utterance came from God Himself.

Those who rejected this life-saving directive as trivial and ridiculous ended up losing greatly. These individuals and their servants’ families suffered the most.

I believe there are a couple of lessons here.

Taking the Word of God seriously and living under its guidance and protection is a matter of choice.

Choosing to obey the Lord yourself is one thing. Not acting in the best interest of those under your charge in quite another. Here, the responsibility for your family members or those who report to you, etc. …is indeed more profound. Making wise decisions that directly impact those you are responsible for in this life has eternal ramifications.

Pharaoh’s servants and anyone else who disregarded the command, it was they who were accountable for costing the lives of everyone and everything under their authority.

If all this seems foolish

to you, please remember that one of these days, all of us living and even those who are dead will personally have to make an account to the Big Guy upstairs for everything we have done during our life here on earth. If that truth is not unsettling to you, it certainly is to me. No one will escape this absolute reality.

So if we have not been living our lives as God would want us to, it’s never too late start afresh! Say you’re sorry to God and mean it, make amends with those you have hurt, including forgiving yourself, and step off in a completely new direction.

And may God bless the journey!

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