If you are reading this blog for the first time during Lent, you should be aware that you have entered a story that overlays the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt to the Promise Land with the Journey of Aspiring Immortals to the Kingdom of God that is on the new immortal Earth. The parallels are striking. The Exodus can teach us Christians some very important lessons about attitude and relationship. For more about this comparison go to Exodus II explained. The series began with Two Wait for Lent.
Ben and Asa could usually be found walking side by side, chatting enough to become oblivious to their sore feet and hunger. Each morning as they set out, most of the pilgrims positioned themselves in the same quadrant of the moving mass of humanity that traveled to a dirge-like rhythm in gender segregated groups of families and tribes. Infants and toddlers swaddled in cotton cocoons dangling from strong female shoulders. God’s swarm of speaking bees intuitively knew when it was time for quiet so they could listen for approaching enemies.
But that wasn’t now. Few clusters were talking about anything besides their thirst, some complaining, some squinting into the distance for a river or even a pond in Olympian competition to be the bearer of the good news. It had been three full days since the last drop of water cooled a parched tongue.
“Yes, David, my child what is it?” answered Zeporah with refreshed amazement at every new word that emanated from the miniature lips of her three year old baby.
“Why doesn’t anyone ask God to make water come out of these rocks for us?”
“Yes David, rocks we have, water we want. How clever you are! Don’t we always ask God to give us the exact opposite of what we have? If we have sickness we ask for health. If we have doubt, we ask for faith. If we have worry, we ask for trust. If we have war, we ask for peace. We have rocks, now let’s ask for water. My pure one, how could the God of our fathers deny you? You be the one to ask.”
“Mama, will you ask Him with me?” Spotting a nested boulder David ran over to it and climbed on top to wait for his mother to join him. Letting the others pass, the woman and the child set out to relieve their fellow voyagers.
“Okay David, I will begin. O’ Lord, who is teaching us with this journey to trust you, to depend on you for every life sustaining element, hear our prayer. I thirst.” Zeporah then nudged David with her piercing green eyes to follow her lead.
“Lord, you made us to need water,” David hesitated searching for the right words to say from his limited vocabulary “and you are pushing us to the good land. Why do you wait for me to ask? Is it because you want to show me that you are the God who hears? Hear me. I thirst.”
Zeporah and David bowed their heads, small tender pink hand clutching her big rough hand. Suddenly David let go and ran over to pick up a straight stick that he spotted in the brush. In less time than it would take to sneeze, David was back on top of the rock. He looked up into the heavens, then straight to the passing chattering throng, then behind him to the oncoming masses. Meanwhile, Zeporah slid off the rock. David lifted his little hand as high as he could and with all his might he struck the granite boulder. Once.
A geyser of the sweet, clear life-giving drink, shot up a good seventy feet from a crevice that David’s unlikely tap made, into the air and returned raining on the giggling boy with the cool refreshment of answered prayer.
Ben and Asa, who were just approaching the scene were among the first to rush over. After looking up with mouths wide open to receive the life- renewing water, and after a few hefty gulps, they quickly became self appointed crowd control officials.
“Oh Lord who provides! How patient you are watching us suffer all this time, deliver us from our own impatience and self reliance.” whispered Zeporah carrying her little savior-child away from the dense epicenter to make room for their thirsty brethren.