Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea. The LORD drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night, and turned the sea into dry land; and the waters were divided.
One dictionary defines “to stretch” as to extend oneself to full length or extent. If you’ve ever tried stretching yourself, you know that it takes some effort if you are doing it correctly. Quite often it causes some discomfort to those muscles that are not frequently used. However, the more we stretch, the easier it gets and the more fit one becomes, allowing one to do more than they could before. I would venture to say, any kind of stretching performed regularly becomes second nature. This is true of physical stretching, but also of spiritual stretching.
As Moses and the army of Israel approach the Red Sea, they are confronted by a major obstacle. They must use a group of muscles they have never used before to overcome the situation before them. At this point, the Israelites are frightened and crying out to Moses, their leader, to do something. This is their normal reaction to any threat. They can see Pharaoh’s soldiers bearing down on them on one side and the body of water, that is the Red Sea, on the other. There is no way out. They’re trapped. The Bible describes the situation as dark. A darkness brought on by the pillar of cloud. In their season of trouble, the angel of God is before, behind and between the army of Israel. In other words, God’s presence is positioned wherever his people need him. As the Psalmist notes in Psalm 139:7, “Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?”
God Almighty, is present and orchestrating every move, but for the miracle to happen, Moses must stretch; Moses must exercise a group of muscles he has never exercised before. Moses stretches out his hand over the sea (vs 21) and when he does the rest is history. Dear friend, could it be, that God has allowed such darkness to come over your life for his purposes? Could it be that the very thing you fear, is an instrument of his will? Could it be that the huge obstacle before you is intended to extend your faith, and to lead you into the next level of your relationship with God?
It is time to stretch your faith over your situation. It is time to stretch your faith over that circumstance that causes your heart to palpitate with fear. It is time to exercise that part of your faith that has lain dormant, so that God Almighty can do what he does best. The same God who triumphed over Israel’s enemy is before, behind and between you and the situation you are facing. His love has hemmed you in, but you must exercise obedience and stretch, and then wait and watch his mighty power work miracles on your behalf. The more you stretch, the easier it will be to trust that he is in complete control no matter what the circumstances around you may look like, and that he will avenge every injustice and thwart every threat directed at you in his time. Now stretch!
Heavenly Father, greater is he that is on me than he that is in the world. Teach me to walk in obedience before you and to believe, despite my unbelief. I know you are in control of my life and that you can perform any miracle without me, but thank you for inviting me to stretch my faith, and to participate with you in your story.