Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Daily Devotion for Day 19 of Lent 2016

Scripture Reading: Exodus 17 (NRSV)

Ceremonial Zulu staff from the 19th century.
Do you imagine the staff of Moses to be carved
in any special way?
Here's the first battle that the former slaves must fight.  I wonder what they used for weapons?  Had they plundered any from the Egyptians when they fled as they did jewelry?

Did they use spears and staffs fashioned from the local trees?  Maybe they made stone axes as well.  Whatever they had, it is not likely that a local tribe had anything much more advanced during that time in human history.

We see here the symbolism of God being with them with Moses lifting up the staff. When it was held aloft, the Israelites won. When he lowered it, the tide turned the other way.

Was this actual power that went out to them or was it a psychological advantage that emboldened them in their cause?

The question is moot at this point in that psychological advantage is power.

Think about your own life when you have believed in yourself.  A strong self-confidence sometimes makes the difference between success and failure.

What can we do to remind ourselves that God is with us?  We do believe that the Holy Spirit gives us strength in times of trouble.  Maybe we need something like the raised staff to look at when we are particularly vulnerable.  Some people carry a pocket cross or religious token that they can touch and say a little prayer.

What will be your trigger?

Picture by Brooklyn Museum [CC BY 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

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