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  • Henry Omotayo

Won't Learn Without Risks I

Exodus 13:17-22

Message No. 0649 | Twitter @GodandUs |

A lot has been said and taught about the eagle, arguably the most powerful bird in the air. Pastors have talked about it and other scholars have written about it. You have heard expressions like, ‘Fly high as the eagle,’ ‘Powerful as the eagle,’ ‘Wise as the eagle,’ and much more. The question is, why is the eagle so powerful and such a bird to learn from?

Well, one of the things we know about the eagle is the ability to take risks. The eagle would see, from high above, a chicken on the ground and it would fly as fast as possible and as low as possible to grab the chicken with its claws and get back in the air, not minding that the owner of the chicken is right there on the ground. We are also told that when the mother eagle wants to teach its eaglets to fly, the mother drops it in the air and then flies quickly to get under and use its wings to catch it and prevent it from falling to the ground. This process is repeated many times until the eaglet is able to fly on its own.

As God’s children, we can see ourselves as the equivalents of the eaglets and God is our Father. Just as the eaglets will never fly without the risk of falling dangerously to the ground, so do we struggle in our daily lives, often because we are afraid or unwilling to take the necessary risks that will build our trusts in God. When we feel that the Holy Spirit is leading us to do certain things, we sometimes just chicken out because we are not sure that it’s the Holy Spirit, or that we have learned so much from other people who did similar things and did not have the desired results.

When the children of Israel left Egypt, they were confronted with a God that they did not know much about. They had Moses to lead them, but the majority of the people were skeptical or outrightly unbelieving of the processes they had to follow to get to the unknown land called the Promised Land. One of the risks they had to take was follow the Pillar of Cloud as their compass for the journey. As you can imagine, many in the congregation would have questions. What is this Pillar that we are following? Is this not the same movement of the cloud that we have seen all our years on earth? How is this different? Why should we believe that it will lead us to our destination? Are we just blindly following the wind?

Yet, with all these questions, the Bible says in Numbers chapter 9, verses 17 and 21-23:

Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, after that the children of Israel would journey; and in the place where the cloud settled, there the children of Israel would pitch their tents. So it was, when the cloud remained only from evening until morning: when the cloud was taken up in the morning, then they would journey; whether by day or by night, whenever the cloud was taken up, they would journey. Whether it was two days, a month, or a year that the cloud remained above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would remain encamped and not journey; but when it was taken up, they would journey. At the command of the Lord they remained encamped, and at the command of the Lord they journeyed; they kept the charge of the Lord, at the command of the Lord by the hand of Moses.

Imagine how challenging it must have been for them to trust the movement of the sky as their GPS, and to encamp in the bush for as long as the Cloud did not move. In the same way, if we are not willing to take the required risks to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit, we will have no way of knowing that He has our backs. Many of us believe that it is God’s responsibility to push us and compel us to follow Him. But in fact, no, it isn’t. Our God is all powerful, but He doesn’t want to do what we are able to do.

When Israel left Egypt, the Book of Exodus chapter 13 verse 17 says that God did not lead them by the way of the land of the Philistines (even though this was a shorter route to the Promised Land), because God knew that if they saw war from the Philistines, they would change their minds and head back to Egypt. Was God not able to make the Philistines to not fight Israel if they passed through their land? Yes, He was, but He wanted Israel to trust Him rather than Him using force to make them follow Him.

In the same way, God is able to do all things and He is able to work only through the method of miracles, but He does not work in this manner. We need to learn to follow God by taking risks. We have often heard our pastors asking us to take the ‘Step of Faith.’ The step of faith means taking the required risks to follow God, believing that He will lead us to the expected end. Even though the journey is risky, and you can imagine that you might end up not having the desired results, you need to follow God and believe in your heart that He can do what He says He can do. There’s just no other way to learn to follow Him if we are not willing to do things that we are uncomfortable with. If we keep to our safe or comfort zones, we will experience nothing new. There will be victories that we cannot experience because we are unwilling to go through the journeys.

Are you willing to experience new things going forward? Are you willing to win the battles you have seen running in your life over the years? Are you willing to see a little more of the power of your God in action? You will need to learn to take the step of faith, the necessary risks that will bring the results that are needed to trust God the more. Can you do this going forward? I pray that our God will prove Himself to you as you say yes to this question. Have a blessed week!

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 If you are yet to give your life to Christ, you do not have a covenant with God and His promises do not apply to you. To come under these promises, please surrender your life to Christ today, by praying this prayer:
 Lord I know that I am a sinner and I am unable to save myself. I am sorry for my sins and I pray that you please forgive me. I am aware that Your Son Jesus died for my sins and I accept Him as my Lord and savior. I surrender my life unto you from this moment. Please take control of my entire being and help me to be obedient to your Word, going forward. Thank you, Lord, for hearing me. I have prayed in Jesus’ name. Amen.
 If you prayed the foregoing prayer, you have just been born again. Please find a Bible believing church in your area and ask to see the pastor. Let him or her know that you have just given your life to Christ and s/he will guide you on next steps in your journey as a child of God. The Lord bless you!
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