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Our father rushed home from work to share the exciting news with our family. He worked construction with many other fathers in our neighborhood, and he usually came home tired and grumpy from spending all day in the heat. He always left the house before the sun rose, and never came home before the sunset. Today was different, he had an announcement to make and wanted to share it with us. His bus ride home seemed to take longer than usual; his mind overflowed anticipation. He raced down the steps of the bus, and ran all the way to our apartment.
My brothers and I were doing school work and finishing chores while our mother cooked dinner. We could smell the bread baking in the oven, and she always melted butter to spread over the top of it. I am the only daughter, so it is my chore to set the table for dinner. I pulled the stepstool over to the cabinet so I could reach the bowls, and counted to five. The pot on the stove was boiling over and my mother rushed to turn down the flame; she was making our favorite beef stew for dinner.
As we gathered at the table, our father burst in the door. He was sweating and out of breath. He could hardly speak in complete sentences as he told us to pack our things, "We're moving to a new city tonight!" He had received news of a new job that would give him more time to be home with our family, and we could not delay. We were only allowed to take one change of clothes, and what we could carry. My heart raced, where were we going to live? Would I make new friends? Why did we have to leave so soon? I needed more time!
Imagine the thoughts of the Hebrew parents as they packed what they could carry for their journey out of Egypt (Exodus 12:31-38). They didn’t have suitcases with wheels, or wagons they could pile boxes in. Every time I pack for a trip, I forget something: toothbrush, underwear, or other essential items. Can you imagine the things they forgot to pack as they rushed to fill their bags? They were awakened in the middle of the night and told it was time to leave the only home they had ever known, to travel by foot to a place they had never been. How do you prepare for a trip like that? The Israelites knew the time had come for them to trust in the God of Moses to lead them into an unfamiliar land.
When God leads us in a new direction, He provides for us every step of the way. He provided food and clothing for the Israelites in the desert for forty years! He will provide for you also, as you say YES to follow Him if he's calling you to a foreign land to become a missionary. It’s time to get excited and race down the steps of the bus! Your family is waiting to welcome you home!