Jacob’s family stays in Egypt for 400 years. After Joseph dies, the Israelites are eventually enslaved. Pharaoh, alarmed at the population of the Hebrews, orders the midwives to kill newborn Hebrew boys. When Moses is born, his mother decides on a creative plan to save her baby.
But when she could no longer hide him, she got a basket made of papyrus reeds and waterproofed it with tar and pitch. She put the baby in the basket and laid it among the reeds along the bank of the Nile River. The baby’s sister then stood at a distance, watching to see what would happen to him.
Soon Pharaoh’s daughter came down to bathe in the river, and her attendants walked along the riverbank. When the princess saw the basket among the reeds, she sent her maid to get it for her. When the princess opened it, she saw the baby. The little boy was crying, and she felt sorry for him. “This must be one of the Hebrew children,” she said.
Then the baby’s sister approached the princess. “Should I go and find one of the Hebrew women to nurse the baby for you?” she asked.
“Yes, do!” the princess replied. So the girl went and called the baby’s mother.
“Take this baby and nurse him for me,” the princess told the baby’s mother. “I will pay you for your help.” So the woman took her baby home and nursed him.
Moses’ mother knew that destroying her child would be wrong, but she could do nothing to change Pharaoh’s new law. Do you sometimes feel surrounded by evil and frustrated by how little you can do about it?
Miriam saw that Pharaoh’s daughter had discovered her baby brother, Moses. Quickly she took the initiative to suggest a nurse who might care for the baby. When faced with evil, look for ways to act against it. Then trust God to use your effort, however small it seems, in his war against evil.
The Bible doesn’t say if Miriam was afraid to approach the Egyptian princess, or if the princess was suspicious of the Hebrew girl. But Miriam did approach her, and the princess bought the services of Miriam and her mother. God saved Moses and reunited his family.
God used the courageous actions of Moses’ mother to place Moses in the house of Pharaoh and to initiate his plan to rescue his people from Egypt. God doesn’t need much from us to accomplish his plan for our lives. Focusing on our human predicament may paralyze us and the situation may appear humanly impossible. But special opportunities may come our way unexpectedly. And steps of faith can change the outlook. We shouldn’t let the fear of what could happen cause us to miss an opportunity to follow God.
Right now you may feel unable to see through your troubles. Focus instead on God, and trust him for the way out. That is all he needs to begin his work in you.