"Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages" (Exodus 2:9).47. Many people all over the world have read this story or are told it to them. The story of Moses is one of the most beautiful and fascinating in the entire world. It takes a hold on us and never for an instant does it lose its interest, for it is so graphically told that once heard it is never forgotten. I have often imagined the anxiety with which that child was born, for he came into the world with the sentence of death lagging over him, for Pharaoh had decreed that the male children should die, and the mother defied even the command of the king, and determined that the child should live, and right from the beginning the battle of right against might was fought at the cradle.
Moses' mother was a slave worker, ads all the Hebrews. She had to work in the brick yards or labour in the field, but God was on her side and she won, as the mother always wins with God on her side. Before going to work she had to choose some hiding place for her child, and she put his little sister, Miriam, on guard while she kept herself from being seen by the soldiers of Pharaoh, who were seeking everywhere to murder the Jewish male children. For three months she kept him hidden, possibly finding a new hiding place every few days. It is hard to imagine anything more difficult than to hide a healthy, growing baby, and he was hidden for three months. Now he was grown larger and fuller of life and a more secure hiding place had to be found, and I can imagine this mother giving up her rest and sleep to prepare a basked for the saving of her child.
I believe the plan must have been formulated in Heaven. I have often thought God must have been as much interested in that work as was the mother of Moses, for you can't make me believe that an event so important as that and so far-reaching in its results ever happened by luck or by chance. Possibly God whispered the plan to the mother when she went to Him in prayer and in her grief because she was afraid the sword of Pharaoh would murder her child. And how carefully the material out of which the basket was made had to be selected! Every part was carefully scrutinized in order that nothing poor might get into its composition, and in the weaving of that basket, the mother's heart, her soul, her prayers, her tears, were interwoven. Oh, if you mothers would exercise as much care over the company your children keep, over the books they read and the places they go, there would not be so many girls feeding the red light district, nor so many boys growing up to bad, criminal lives.
And with what thanksgiving she must have poured out her heart when at last the work was done and the ark was ready to carry its precious cargo, more precious than if it was to hold the crown jewels of Egypt. And I can imagine the last night that baby was in the home. Most certainly some of you who are reading this have experienced the last night of a child, the pain of saying the last goodbye, the gruesome feeling never to see it again and only remember the memories to go by. While others were sleeping there was no sleep for you and I can imagine there was no sleep for Moses' mother. Others in the house might have slept, but not a moment could she spare of the precious time allotted her with her little one, and all through the night she must have prayed that God would shield and protect her baby and bless the work she had done and the step she was about to take.
Some people often say to me: "I wonder what the angels do: how they employ their time?". I think I know what some of them did that night. They guarded that house so carefully that not a soldier of old Pharaoh ever crossed the threshold. They saw to it that not one of them harmed that baby. At dawn the mother must have kissed him goodbye, placed him in the ark and hid him among the reeds and rushes, and with an itching heart and tear dimmed eyes she turned back again to the field and back to the brick yards to labour, and wait to see what God will do. She had done her prayerful best, and when you have done that you can bank on it that God will not fail you. How easy it is for God to give the needed help, no matter how hopeless it might seem, if we only believe that with God all things are possible, no matter how improbable.
What unexpected answers the Lord would give to our prayers! She knew God would help her some way, but I don't think she ever dreamed that God would help her by sending Pharaoh's daughter to care for the child; but it was no harder for God to send the princess than it was to get the mother to prepare the basket. What was impossible from her standpoint was easy for God. Pharaoh's daughter came down to the water to bathe, and the basket was discovered, just as God wanted it to be, and one of her maids was sent to fetch it. You can bank on it all Heaven was interested to see that not one hair of that baby's head was injured. There weren't devils enough in Hell to pull one hair out of its head. You may he sure the angels were not out to some bridge whist party then. God had something for them to do.
The basket was brought, and with feminine curiosity the daughter of Pharaoh had to look into it to see what was there, and when they removed the cover there was lying a strong, healthy baby boy, kicking up its heels and sucking its thumbs, as probably most of us did when we were boys, and probably as you did when you were a girl.The baby looks up and weeps, and those tears blotted out all that was against it and gave it a chance for its life. I don't know, but I think an angel stood there and pinched it to make it cry, for it cried at the right time. Just as God plans, God always does things at the right time.
Give God a chance - I he may be a little slow at times, but He will always get around in time. The tears of that baby were the jewels with which Israel was ransomed from Egyptian bondage. The princess had a woman's heart, and when a woman's heart and baby's tears meet, something happens that gives the devil cold the runs. Perhaps the princess had a baby that had died, and the sight of Moses may have torn the wound open and made it bleed afresh. But she had a woman's heart, and that made her forget she was the daughter of Pharaoh and she was determined to give protection to that baby.
Faithful Miriam saw the heart of the princess reflected in her face. Miriam had studied faces so much that she could read the princess' heart as plainly as if written in an open book, and she said to her: "Shall I go and get one of the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?" and the princess said, "Go." I see her little feet and legs fly as she runs down the hot, dusty road, and her mother must have seen her coming a mile away, and she ran to meet her own baby put back into her arms and she was being paid Egyptian gold to take care of her own baby. See how the Lord does things. "Now, you take this child and nurse it for me and I will pay you your wages." It was God who guided Pharaoh's daughter, paying Moses' mother for doing what she wanted to do more than anything else, nurse her own baby.
How quickly the mother was paid for these long hours of anxiety and alarm and grief, and if the angels know what is going on what a hilarious time there must have been in Heaven when they saw Moses and Miriam back at home under the protection of the daughter of Pharaoh. I imagine she dropped on her knees and poured out her heart to God, who had helped her so gloriously. She must have said: "Well, Lord, I knew you would help me. I knew you would take care of my baby when I made the ark and put him in it and put it in the water, but I never dreamed that You would put him back into my arms to take care of.
I would not have to work and slave in the field and make back and be tortured almost to death by fear that the soldiers of Pharaoh would find my baby and kill him. "I never thought you would soften the stony heart of Pharaoh and make him pay me for what I would rather do than anything else in this world." I expect to meet Moses' mother in Heaven, and I am going to ask her how much old Pharaoh had to pay her for the job. I think that's one of the best jokes, that old sinner having to pay the mother to take care of her own baby. But, I tell you, if you give God a chance, He will fill your heart to overflowing. Just give God a chance.
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