The Stand

“Do not fear! Stand by and see the salvation of the Lord which He will accomplish for you today.” Exodus 14:13

Moses never appeared more convincing and courageous than when he voiced this challenge to the fear-filled people of Israel. As the chariots of Pharaoh bore down on them, they cried out to God, but they poured their sarcasm onto Moses. He rose to the occasion with a message of hope. He must have quickly exited the public stage, and found a private place behind a rock to cry out in panic to God.

Moses didn’t take a stand. He took a knee. The wisest intercessors know there is danger in posing, but there is great refuge in praying. Moses may have started out posing, but he ended up praying. He was a wise man, indeed.

“Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Why are your crying out to Me? Tell the sons of Israel to go forward.” V:15

The process of prayer and the purpose of prayer never change. The process of prayer involves bringing you face to face with God in breathless panic. When you realize you have come to the end of your rope, stop making rope. Start praying.

The purpose of answered prayer is to leave you gasping for breath to honor God, not grasping for credit for what He did. Prayer brings His Presence into the middle of your crisis. Don’t turn it into a “selfie.” Step out of the limelight and give Him all the glory.

Prayer is not an equal partnership, but it does reveal a form of cooperation best described by the yoke relationship. One leads. The other follows. The synergy appears seamless, but there is always one who provides greater strength and clear direction. Together great things are done, but there is only one Captain. Prayer warriors do not seek to be in authority. They choose to be under authority.

“As for you, lift up your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it.” V. 16

“As for Me…I will be honored through Pharaoh and all his army…then the Egyptians will know that I am the Lord, when I am honored…” V. 18

“As for you” and “As for Me” describe the partnership of prayer perfectly. Moses came to God in panic. He was placed in a position of power. This is the process. He gave all of the honor and all of the glory to God. This is the purpose.

“Then Moses and the sons of Israel sang this song to the Lord, and said, I will sing to the Lord, for He is highly exalted; the horse and its rider He has hurled into the sea. The Lord is my strength and my song, and He has become my salvation.” Exodus 15:1-2

“Pray like it depends on God, work like it depends on you.”

This quote has been attributed to everyone from St. Augustine to John Wesley and even to Dave Ramsey. So, who knows? The truth is prayer begins and ends with God. It was His idea, and any participation in it should be viewed as the privilege of a junior partner, not a managing director.

NOTE TO SELF: Standing on the promises of God is a great deal more effective when you are kneeling on the premises of your latest crisis. Praying before, during and after a crisis prepares you to honor God for His deliverance and His Presence. Moses may not have been honest to the people regarding all that was going on in his heart, but he was honest where it counted the most. He was honest to God. Answers to your prayers begin on your part with the humility and honesty. They end with honoring God for His part in answering your prayers.