Exodus 15:23 -Now when they came to Marah, they could not drink the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore the name of it was called Marah.
The children of Israel found themselves in an unwelcome place. They have been wandering in the desert for three days unable to find water. And when they finally find water, it is undrinkable! It’s bitter!
If you read the fourteen chapters before this verse, you can well understand that for them, this is just another disappointment in a whole list of disappointments.
They were slaves for over 400 years under Egyptian rule and hard taskmasters. When Moses came to deliver them, instead of things getting better, they got worst. When they got to the Red Sea, the Egyptians came up behind them and they were sure they would be slaughtered. And typical of human nature, they were probably feeling “If it’s not one thing, it’s another”.
But God! In the midst of their situations, God was mindful of them and working things out for their good. They couldn’t see it at the time, but it was happening nevertheless.
While they were in bondage, Moses was born. And even though it took him 80 years to get to the place where God was ready to use him, God was still working on the deliverance of His people!
While Pharaoh was constantly saying no to Moses and God; God was demonstrating His power to deliver; and when He did, they came out of Egypt with great wealth.
And when they got to the Red Sea, (after having been led by a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night) God parted the Red Sea and they crossed over on dry land.
And now they are in the Wilderness of Shur for three days without water and they are not happy. And they have forgotten the goodness of God!
Exodus 15:24 – And the people complained against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?”
Wouldn’t you think that after all of the miracles before the Exodus and the latest miracle of crossing the Red Sea that coming to bitter water would cause them to look forward to what God was about to do instead of complaining? Hind sight is twenty twenty!
How many times have you and I seen the hand of God move on our behalf? For me, I have been healed of paralysis, one of our daughters was healed of abnormal seizure activity, another was healed of larynx Malaysia, while yet another was healed of “the issue of blood”, to name a few. Many times He has provided finances, jobs at just the right time, favor in a situation, protection from an incident or accident…How about you? What has He done for you through the years? Any healings? Any financial breakthroughs? Any protections?
And yet, just like the children of Israel, when something happens contrary to what we expect, we find ourselves dealing with bitter waters. I know, we don’t like to admit that we can become bitter with the Heavenly Father, but it happens all too frequently.
Bitterness is a terrible place to camp out at. The bitter water was good for nothing, and so are bitter people. Life can at times be filled with disappointments, setbacks, and even heartaches. God knows this! And so does Jesus. Didn’t He say in John 16:33-“ In this world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”?
In other words, we are not to allow these things to stump us, to cause us to become bitter. We are to understand that He overcame that we might overcome!
So if you are stuck at the waters of Marah, feeling bitter about life, it is time to change your location. Time to move from this place of bitterness to your oasis. I’ll explain how in my next post! Wonderful Jesus!