Daily Devotion for October 22, 2015
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.
Prayer for the Day
Holy God, you have given me another day. Bring your Holy Spirit into my mind and my life, so that I may walk this day in your presence. Let me feel your presence throughout the day, remembering always that you sent your Spirit that you might be a living force in all I see and all I do. When I feel temptation or begin to stray, show me your path. Correct me, comfort me, let me live your will; that I may be happy in this life and blessed in the life to come. This I pray in the name of Christ, my Lord.
Almighty Christ, let me look into that place beyond space and time where you dwell, from where you came and to which you will return. Let me look to you and be saved: Beyond material things, beyond the insistent desires of my flesh, beyond the reach of Satan.
Give me the faith that can save me from despair, the faith that will dissolve my worry and care, the faith that can bring peace beyond all understanding. Let me move every day towards absolute faith in you, for there lies the strength I need to follow you without reservation. Let me find, every day, more and more faith, that I may have an ever-renewing vitality and power, and live in the conviction that you and only you can and will take care of me, forever.
[Looking into the place beyond space and time where God dwells.]
Let me not forget my prayers as I go out into the world. Holy Spirit, be with me, and let me praise you and remember you in my every action and thought, for the entire day long. In Christ's name I ask this,
(Additional prayers may be found at Prayers for All Occasions.)
God be with you 'til we meet again.
What is Home?
"Our Father refreshes us on the journey with some pleasant inns, but will not encourage us to mistake them for home."
Exodus 15:1, 13-21 (ESV)
The Song of Moses 
Then Moses and the people of Israel sang this song to the Lord, saying, . . .
“You have led in your steadfast love the people whom you have redeemed;
you have guided them by your strength to your holy abode.
The peoples have heard; they tremble;
pangs have seized the inhabitants of Philistia.
Now are the chiefs of Edom dismayed;
trembling seizes the leaders of Moab;
all the inhabitants of Canaan have melted away.
Terror and dread fall upon them;
because of the greatness of your arm, they are still as a stone,
till your people, O Lord, pass by,
till the people pass by whom you have purchased.
You will bring them in and plant them on your own mountain,
the place, O Lord, which you have made for your abode,
the sanctuary, O Lord, which your hands have established.
For when the horses of Pharaoh with his chariots and his horsemen went into the sea, the Lord brought back the waters of the sea upon them, but the people of Israel walked on dry ground in the midst of the sea.
Then Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her hand, and all the women went out after her with tambourines and dancing. And Miriam sang to them:
the horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea.”
Notes on the Scripture
Exodus is a popular, fascinating, and enduring Bible story, but often we do not fully understand why. If we read the second half of the Song of Moses and let it sink in a bit, the meaning of Exodus and the meaning of life begin to coalesce, for it is the story of every person seeking God, the overarching story of the Bible.
God has seen fit, in his graciousness, to manifest Himself to us repeatedly throughout the ages; and the reason He comes is to lead us to the place where He lives. We are mired in slavery. And the power which binds us, call it mortality or Satan or what you will, is indeed powerful. It is immediate. And we are used to it and fear to abandon the "obvious" way to live, the path of least resistance, a life that often seems to consist largely of trying to crawl to the top of a cage of angry rats.
The song, note, reads "You have guided them to your holy abode," even though the Hebrews have just begun their arduous journey. God has come to them, as Christ came to us, but — for reasons we cannot hope to understand — He does not just snap His fingers. If that was God's will, life on earth would hardly need to exist. The Hebrews will have to struggle, suffer, and fight over the course of forty years even to begin their habitation of the Promised Land.
And in this time, they will have to have utter faith in God, and worship Him in faith, for their very lives depend on Him. Ours do also — but it is immediately visible to the Hebrews, who are stuck in the middle of a hostile desert without much food or water, surrounded by aggressive and pitiless armies, larger and stronger than they.
Once we realize that we are in the same position as the Hebrews, wisdom comes. We blind ourselves to our fragility; but like the Egyptians, we live solely by the direct intervention of God, on the edge of a vast cosmos that could annihilate us in an instant.
Jesus came to take us home, to His home. We live in faithfulness, relying on His promise; and Exodus gives us heart. For the journey of the Hebrews was long and arduous, but as He always does and always will, God kept His promise to them.