So Moses spoke thus to the children of Israel; but they did not heed Moses, because of anguish
of spirit and cruel bondage.
An old fable says that Satan once held a sale and offered all the tools of his profession to anyone
who would pay the price. They were spread out on the table and each one labeled: hatred, malice,
envy, despair, sickness, sensuality—the weapons we all know so well. But off to one side lay a
harmless-looking instrument marked “discouragement.”
It was old and worn, but it was priced far above all the rest. When asked the reason why, the
devil replied, “Because I can use this one so much more easily than the others. No one knows
that it belongs to me, so with it I can open doors that are tightly bolted against the others.”
Satan had certainly gotten inside the camp of the Israelites. They were totally discouraged.
Moses had confronted Pharaoh, but instead of the deliverance they had been promised, they were
experiencing even more cruel and unreasonable afflictions.
Moses, whom they thought had been sent by God, seemed powerless before Pharaoh.
Consequently, not only were the people discouraged, they became disobedient. They chose to no
longer heed Moses’ advice.
Many Christians find that being obedient to God does not make life easier for them. Often
standing up for the truth of God’s Word makes us the object of people’s ridicule and even
persecution. Don’t be discouraged if afflictions come your way. This makes you part of a great
and glorious cloud of witnesses who have experienced the same thing.
And whatever you do, don’t back away from your duty as a Christian just because you may
experience difficulty. Ask God to show you how you can turn these afflictions into blessings for
others and praise for Him. He did it for Moses; He’ll do it for you.
BROODING ON YOUR TROUBLES ONLY HATCHES DISCOURAGEMENT.