As I was reading the beginning of the Exodus story this morning, I was startled by how simply it starts. I have the words of my friend Mike Cope in my mind as I’ve heard him preach the introduction to Exodus. When I think of Exodus, I think of Moses, and Pharaoh, and God’s mighty works to deliver his people. I think of overacting from Charlton Heston, and great music from Dreamworks. What I don’t think about very much when recalling the Exodus story are Shiphrah, Puah, and Miriam.
These three women simply did the job that was in front of them. Two were midwives who did what they always do; deliver babies. Bring life. I’m not sure if they knew that their delivering of this particular Hebrew baby would result in the salvation of a great many people, or if they were just doing their job. They woke up, went to work, and delivered babies.
And then there is Miriam, doing what any big sibling does (or should do!). She’s looking out for the interest of her little brother Moses.
So the time will come for God to act in a mighty way and have the great showdown with Pharaoh. He’ll intervene and deliver his people in a miraculous way. The gospel will be announced; God has heard the cries of his people, and he’s coming on the scene to set them free. That will come. But, it all starts simply with people doing the task that has been given to them. It starts with people waking up and doing their routine job; delivering babies and being a big sister.
I’m often overwhelmed by the intersection of faith and life. The world is in great need of the good news of Christ. Where do we start?! As we talked about at church this past Sunday, we eat the elephant one bite at a time. I can’t save the world. I can’t announce the gospel to all peoples. But, I can do the task in front of me today.
I can wake up, go to work, do my job, be aware of people around me, walk in step with the Spirit, live and proclaim the gospel when the opportunities arise. I can wake up today, love God, and love my neighbor. And who knows, maybe one day because of our little tasks that we do, God will bring the salvation of lots of people.