Time has a way of slipping by without our notice. Of course, the opposite happens when we are waiting for something, whether it be the coffee pot to fill or our vacation to begin. We become painfully aware of time when we are wanting something to happen. Especially when we are waiting for God.
Sometimes we get frustrated by waiting for God to act. We may begin to wonder if God knows or cares about our situation. That feeling was certainly familiar to the Israelites. Today’s passage describes the birth and early life of Moses that took place during a time the Lord had predicted to Abram, when God’s people were “strangers in a country not their own” (Gen. 15:13). Although Abram’s descendants spent 400 years there, the “long period” to which verse 23 refers in Exodus 2 is probably a reference to Moses’ stay in Midian. During those years the Israelites “groaned in their slavery and cried out.” These cries were probably not prayers in our formal sense but cries of anguish. Did God know their situation? Did He care?
In the Hebrew text of verses 24–25, three verbs describe God’s response. The text says He heard their groaning, remembered His covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and knew. Unlike the first two verbs, there is no object given for the third. It simply says, “God knew.” These three actions of God occur during the “long period” that stretched from Moses’ birth until God called him at the burning bush. We can be sure they also describe what God was doing during the 400 years of apparent silence as God’s people waited for Him to do what He had promised.
>> Are you waiting for God to answer your prayer? Waiting can be long and hard. It may feel at times like God is ignoring you. But what was true for Israel is also true for you. God has heard your cry. He remembers His promises. God knows.
Once again, help us trust You to know and do what is right. This is especially difficult when we are waiting on You or when You are silent. Yet we cling to faith in You and in Your holiness. You know our struggles.