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There is no place in the Bible more illustrative of God’s leadership than the book of Exodus. As God decimated the land of Egypt, he was preparing the hearts of Israel to step out in faith and follow him. When they took those steps, God carefully executed his plan to lead a nation of slaves to freedom and to reclaim their heritage as God’s chosen people. Initially, God knew that the people needed clear direction and clear leadership. So, God presented himself as a pillar of smoke by day and a pillar of fire by night. In addition, he led them away from the Canaanite warriors initially—and down to the Red sea. God was concerned that in their current state, Israel would return to slavery before they would go into battle as a free people.
We must remember that God knows us inside and out. He has his plan for our lives laid out in such a way to meet us where we are and lead us to where we are prepared for the battle and the victory he has awaiting us. God’s plan is not a “one size fits all” type plan. Instead, he prepares us and all those we touch to see him and follow him—as we are and from the place we are at. While we cannot always see the reason for his direction, we can always see him. Like the pillar of fire and cloud, God will clearly reveal himself if we seek him and humbly follow his lead. He will prepare us for his plan and protect us from the enemy both physical and spiritual. We simply need to watch and follow.
God Bless You
18 So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.[a] The Israelites went up out of Egypt ready for battle.
19 Moses took the bones of Joseph with him because Joseph had made the Israelites swear an oath. He had said, “God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up with you from this place.”[b]
20 After leaving Sukkoth they camped at Etham on the edge of the desert. 21 By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night. 22 Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left its place in front of the people.