Don’t Be Desensitized

  1. Message: Continuing in Exodus I was thinking about all of the plagues that had happened and were continuing to happen, and how Pharaoh was responding to them all. He didn’t seem to be surprised by them. Just mildly irritated. To get rid of them he would act like he had a change of heart, only to revert back as soon as the immediate irritation was gone. He had picked up on a pattern and seemed to be manipulating the situation by promising to let the people go and asking Moses to pray to get rid of it. In chapter 9 we read about the livestock dying, the people breaking out in boils and then the thunder and hail that killed people and animals that were left outside in the open. What really caught my attention this time was that there was a very specific warning given to not only Pharaoh, but also to the people of Egypt. They were told that they needed to bring in their livestock and their servants from the open fields and get them under shelter. Those left out in the open would die. For the first time the Egyptians actually had a chance to avoid this particular plague if they would have only listened. Verse 20 says that some of Pharaoh’s officials were afraid when they heard what God said and they quickly brought in their flocks and servants, but those who paid no attention to the word of the Lord left theirs out in the open. There is a lot to think about here. First being that we could try to excuse Pharaoh for being stubborn because his heart was hardened by God, but what about the other people who paid no attention to the word of the Lord? Second, were those who paid no attention to God’s warning just following the example of their leader who disregarded God? Lastly, what a change-up this time around seeing that the people were actually able to choose for themselves whether they wanted to heed the warning from God or suffer through this plague! God was showing them not only his power, but he was also showing them that there was freedom and  protection in heeding his word. Some of Pharaoh’s leaders were wise and responded while Pharaoh continued in his stubborn ways.
  2. Command: Heed the words of God!
  3. Promise: God is faithful to his promises when we obey him.
  4. Warning: If we continue to ignore warning signs, it becomes a familiar pattern to continue until one day it is too late.
  5. Application: So much application here! I brought up a few different points in the message portion but what I’d really like to focus on here is the fact that we often have a tendency to become numb to warning signs in our lives. Where we might be initially concerned with a warning, we eventually discover that we get away with things without permanent consequences. When we disregard a warning more than once it becomes a pattern and we gradually learn how far we can push the boundaries. We also become numb to some of the consequences when they do start to happen and even learn to live with them. This develops a self-deception that keeps us repeating harmful behavior in spite of consequences. These warnings can be medical, financial, relational and spiritual. My challenge to myself is to look at some of the areas of my life, pay attention to the things that are out of order and evaluate the things that I have learned to be comfortable with. I have often wondered how long it takes a horder to become so comfortable living in a home filled with trash, but spiritually I have done the very same thing! Things I may have initially found uncomfortable may now become a normal part of life that no longer alarms me. I don’t want to be desensitized to the voice of God, or the natural warning signs for consequences in my life!

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