21 Days Fast & Pray - Day 17 : Our World
A. Devotion - Exodus 1:12
Read Exodus 1:8-11 first for the background to this verse. Israelites were afflicted by Egyptians who wew afraid of them. Exo 1:7 explains the reason for the affliction. Israelites were about 70 in number, during the time of Joseph, when they arrived in Egypt. They grew to about 600,000 men besides children (Exo 12:37), in a short period of time. This was a huge increase. The Israelites were not only huge in number but also strong. Think of it this way; a plant growing well, yielding an amazing amount of good fruit and it was multiplying.
It was good for the Israelites. However, the Egyptians were jealous and afraid of this phenomenal growth (Exo 1:8-11). The enemy is not afraid of a large number of weak people who bear no fruit, but the enemy starts to stir up when there is strength in God's people.
Afflictions were present during the Old Testament, in the time of Jesus and during church history in Acts. So affliction has been evident for God's people throughout history. What is interesting about affliction? After every affliction there is a change of season with betterment for God's children. In the case of the Israelites, after their affliction they were released from slavery by the Egyptians. After this, they had to spend 40 years in the desert, and finally they entered the promised land.
There are situations in life where you do good and grow well, yet you are afflicted. If this is the case, take heart. Many children of God went through the same path. God will make the affliction work in your favour to transform you and to bring you into a new season in your life.
B. Application / Self-reflection
- Are you willing to submit your life to God for a brand new season even if you have to suffer for a while?
- Will you pray for those who afflict you?