And it was told the king of Egypt that the people fled: and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was turned against the people, and they said, Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us?Exodus 14:5 KJV
I was meditating on the effects of walking in purpose. Moving in the tasks that God has laid in front of us and rediscovered Exodus 14:5. I’ve read the story of Moses in pieces over the years. However, in this time this verse stuck out like a sore thumb. Whenever this happens, I know that God wants to teach me something.
So, of course, I went through the typical interpretations. “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone” is the most common. This concept is a comfort to someone who has been rejected. Whoever has rejected them will regret it and miss their absence. And so on and so forth. God told me to dig deeper.
When we walk in purpose, it is inevitable that rejection will come. Not everyone that starts with you will finish with you. Being rejected for your faith happens. People will let you go for being too churchy or too good. When your gift begins to make room for you, those who rejected you for surface reasons will come a-knocking. When we say yes to God, the pruning begins. Whatever dead and dying branches we have need to be cut away.
I began to think about a sermon I heard about properly seeing those around you. When we walk in purpose, we need to be careful about who to keep close and who to keep at a distance. Jesus had the apostles but there were only three that were the inner, inner circle. I then realized that I was in a pruning season. I slapped my head and said oh! Immediately, I became sad.
My last pruning was painful. In fact, painful is an understatement. At that moment, I had to dig up the “Nevertheless.” You know the “Nevertheless.” Like Jesus talking to God in the garden in Matthew 26:39. And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. (KJV)
People who cut themselves away by rejection will fight to stay close. It’s a curious side-effect. It sparks the question, “If you rejected me, why bother chasing me?” If I was who I used to be, I would take it as a feather in my cap. I’m so awesome people will fight to stay close to me. However, look again at what Pharaoh said. Why have we done this, that we have let Israel go from serving us? Pharaoh then began to chase them to get them back.
In my last pruning season, a person close to me was exposed as a user. In their mind, I was struggling just like them. Sadly, it wasn’t my awesomeness that kept them. It was my provision. I noticed that when I was struggling and building my faith, it wasn’t a problem. There was no outward evidence that God was listening. To them, my faith was just a lifestyle. Just like any other.
However, when my faith started manifesting public change, God started to edge them out of my life. God showed me that I was a means to an end. In fact, they considered me less than because I was in a space of rebuilding my life from scratch. They didn’t understand when my gifts began to manifest and then make room for me.
The person doubted what God was doing in my life. God had to cut them away. It was difficult at first because I was very close to this person. Our relationship was fine until I started to rise. Some people like where you are in your brokenness. They like being in brokenness. When you start to move out of it, it thwarts their plans for you.
If you continue to read the story about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt, Pharaoh chased after them. It’s a thrilling story. It culminates into the Israelites crossing the Red Sea. When they went across the sea, Pharaoh and his army followed behind them. When the last Israelite arrived on the other side, the water began to move back into place. The army was swallowed by the sea.
It’s a lesson that the person pruned will try to chase you to stay close. To continue to utilize your services but will be swallowed by the sea. Family, not everyone can go with you. I know, it’s a cliché saying but no less true. I know it’s difficult. It hurts but all things work together for the good of them that love the Lord and are called to His purpose.
Are you called to God’s purpose? Do you love Him? Has God ever failed you? ~ Selah