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A Place of No Escape!

 

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I love this little cartoon picture. This guy has literally painted himself into a corner with no way to escape. You notice that there are no windows or doors nearby. When I first saw this, I laughed and thought “How can anyone be so dumb?” Then it hit me that life is full of dead ends. And, oftentimes, we are the ones that work ourselves into these dead ends.

 

Have you ever come to a dead end? Perhaps, you have driven down a back alley only to find that there was no way out and you were unable to turn around. How frustrating such circumstances can be. Yet, many times in our lives we hit what seems to us to be dead ends. Matter of fact, as a Christian, I am assured that I am going to encounter many dead ends in life. The Bible repeatedly tells us that God is going to bring difficult circumstances into our live in order to grow us spiritually. The Bible also gives us many examples of people who encounter places of no of escape.

 

The children of Israel are a great example. In Exodus 4, we find the story of their exodus from Egypt. Of course, many of us know about the plagues. God used the plagues to demonstrate His awesome power and that He would take care of the Israelites. In the end, Pharaoh had no choice but to let God’s people go. Exodus 4 tells us that God led them away from Egypt and straight to the Red Sea. He led them to a place of no escape. They were surrounded. Pharaoh was angry about his decision and had amassed all of his military might to bring them back.With Pharaoh bearing down from behind and the Red Sea in front, the Israelites were in a place with no escape. Their reaction was two fold. They immediately began to complain and blame God for their predicament. There are four things we can learn from this.

 

  • Sometimes, it is a place that God leads us. (Exodus 4:1-4)

God specifically commanded the children of Israel to encamp by the sea. God led them to that specific place. Sometimes, God leads us to places of no escape. God had a purpose for leading them there. His purpose was to prove once again His awesome power and His willingness to deliver. God wants to do the same for us. When we experience His power and His deliverance, our faith in Him grows even more. We need the faith in Him that demonstrates to the world that He is in control. In order for that to happen, God will sometimes lead us to a place of no escape.

  • Sometimes, it is a place that God tests us. (Exodus 14b-9)

Very often when God leads us to a place it so that He can test us. It is important to note that the Israelites were in this predicament because they were obedient to Him. It was not because of disobedience or some other sin. They did exactly what God had asked of them. We are the way of obedience. In other words, God works through those who are obedient to them. If we want to experience the awesomeness of God, then we must obey Him completely and confidently. We must obey Him even when the circumstances seem to be overwhelmingly against us. We must obey Him even to the point we feel that we have no way of escape. Each circumstance is opportunity for God test us and know that we are committed to obeying Him.

  • Oftentimes, it is a place that we fail Him. (Exodus 14:10-12)

Two reasons we fail Him when faced with dead ends. One, we fail because of our fear. The Israelites overreacted because of the fear that darkened their heart. Fear causes us doubt God’s ability to deliver and protect us from harm. We allow fear to defeat our faith and trust in God. Second, we fail because we forget. The Israelites forgot how bad it had been in Egypt. They forgot about the bondage, the death, the hardness of life as slaves to the Egyptians. Their forgetfulness paved the way for fear and failure.

  • Always, it is a place that He delivers us. (Exodus 14:13-14)

No matter that circumstances God has promised to deliver us. I Corinthians 10:13 is great promise from God. He has promised that He will always make a way of escape even when it seems there is no way of escape. Moses told the children of Israel to do three things: fear not, stand still, and watch God deliver. We must follow the same advice. When we are faced with impossible odds, we need to overcome our fear by putting complete faith and confidence in God’s ability to deliver. We also need to just stand still and let God do His business. Too many times we try to work it all out. Instead, we should be still and give Him control of the situation. When we do these two things, God will fulfill His promise and provide an escape. He is good and promises are everlasting.

 

Can you relate to the children of Israel? Are you in a dead end situation such as dead end job, a dead end marriage, or a dead end financial mess? How can you be obedient to Him in these situations? What advice would you give to others who find themselves in places of no escape? Do you have testimony of being in places of no escape and seeing God deliver?