Water from a Rock

One Sunday a few weeks ago, we read Exodus 17 in worship. The Israelites are fairly fresh from leaving Egypt and have seen more spectacular miracles than the average person might expect to see in the span of a few months. Now they’re in the wilderness and have a real need for water. But despite seeing God provide for them in amazing ways, when it seemed that all was lost, they report their need to Moses in something along the lines of a class-action lawsuit.

Moses, worried that he’s about to be lynched, runs to God for help. He’s pretty agitated. Yet God gives him a calm, gracious answer: Go hit that rock with a stick. Moses obeys, and God provides water for all those people. From a rock.

So God met the need of His people, even though they brought it to Him as a complaint? Wow. That’s some God!

Later, Jesus said, “So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.” (Matthew 6:31-32)  He also said, “If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:11) I don’t think I’m drawing a bad conclusion from the Bible when I write that God loves taking care of His people.

The Israelites experience in the desert made me think about our own move and our own needs.

In our April newsletter, I mentioned that we need an additional $2,000 in support each month to have an adequate living in Germany. We also have to sell the house. And we’d like for the boys to start school in Germany this August. That’s a lot of water. With the U.S. economy and housing market as they are, it seems that God is leading us to a big rock and saying, “Don’t worry! I’ve done this before.”

Yes, He has done it before. Katherine and I began serving Wycliffe at different times, and we each had to find all of our financial support before going to Africa. Lo and behold, God provided it! He did it then, and we fully expect Him to do it again now.

Here’s the fun part. You know how He does it? Through our brothers and sisters in Christ! After all, we missionaries would look pretty silly if we had to walk around with corporate logos all over us, like NASCAR drivers. So if you’re a child of God, it’s just possible that He’ll stir you to give to our ministry. Just like He stirred us to go in the first place.

One doesn’t have to be a “big giver” to make a difference. It would be pretty easy for 200 people to meet our present need, don’t you think? God just wants people who are eager to give. If you’re one of those people, or you know a fellow believer who is, then here’s the place to go: http://www.wycliffe.org/Partnership.aspx?mid=ECCA8C.

We’re all standing before an imposing rock as God calls us to reach this world with His message. Just read what Wycliffe USA’s leader, Bob Creson, recently said to Mission Network News about the size of the task. The rock’s big, but our God is ready to let loose streams of water if we’ll all obey Him!

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David Liddle

I grew up in Media, Pennsylvania, close to Philadelphia. I graduated from The Citadel in 1994. In 1995, I joined Wycliffe Bible Translators and have served in Africa, the United States, and Germany. Katherine and I were married in November 1998.

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