“Jacob, don’t be afraid to go down into Egypt” (Genesis 46:3). It doesn’t add up. Earlier in his life, this same God told Jacob, “Go home and live in the land of your fathers” (Genesis 31:3, 13). For his entire life, Jacob recalled stories about his father and grandfather and the danger posed by Egypt (Genesis 12, 26). He finally had things lined up just like he wanted in Canaan. The promises he had heard for his entire life about becoming “a great nation” were coming into view. Now they seemed to be on the cusp of being devoured in pagan Egypt. He was being led from a place of prominence to a land which ate bands of people like his family for lunch. As he contemplates his future, no doubt succumbing to the idea it was over, there sounded a call from heaven, “don’t be afraid of the Egypt experience!”
If you keep reading the story of Jacob in Egypt something amazing becomes clear. We discover a God more than capable of fulfilling His promises in the most unlikely of places. By the time you turn a few pages and the title at the top of your Bible changes from Genesis to Exodus, every promise God made to Jacob had been fulfilled. In Egypt, of all places!
It didn’t add up when Jacob was packing. It didn’t add up when Jacob had to say goodbye to the comforts of his home. It didn’t add up when Jacob rounded up his family, looking at them with a sense of dread because of what he envisioned happening to them. Yet God displayed His amazing ability to keep His Word even when Jacob was in the most unlikely of places for such to happen.
You and I need not fear our own “Egypt Experience.” Sure, it doesn’t add up when you read God’s promise to meet your needs (Philippians 4:19) and there are pressing needs at every turn. It doesn’t add up when Paul tells us we are not appointed to wrath (1 Thessalonians 5:9) and yet we are witnessing a rising tide of anger and hostility directed toward the church…a lot of it from within the church! No, it doesn’t add up when we are told Jesus will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5) and it seems God is a million miles away. I want you, particularly if things are not adding up right now, to remember this: God keeps His promises in unlikely places!
Years ago, I made a feeble effort to sing a song which deeply moved me. It was written by a man named Tim Pedigo. His challenge was simple: KEEP BELIEVING.
When troubles rise and catch you unaware
The day to day of living seems unfair
So you try again all your dreams and plans, but they end up in defeat,
And the fancy thrills that once fulfilled now leave you incomplete
And you wonder where your life’s gone wrong and why you can’t find peace
Your hope’s not gone; it’s just been too long since you’ve had to believe
Keep believing in what you know is true
Keep believing, you know the Lord will see you through
When troubles rise in your life and you don’t know what to do
You’ll be fine if you just keep believing.
If an “Egypt Experience” is on your horizon, KEEP BELIEVING. If you are stuck in the hot sands of a current “Egypt Experience,” KEEP BELIEVING. Your God will amaze you by showing up in the most unlikely of places!