Certainly the longest and most adventurous journey in the Bible was that of Moses when seeking a home country for the children of Israel. He and his people had left Egypt, hoping for prosperity and freedom in their own land. They wandered for many years in the wilderness. At one time they barely had enough water and food to live on, and were relentlessly pursued by the Egyptians, who were intent on bringing them back to slavery. But Moses prayed to God and followed His command, and he and his people were able to overcome danger and suffering.
Today, after thousands of years, people are still seeking refuge, leaving their countries because of political or economic pressure or persecution. The Psalmist asked in humble recognition: "Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? . . . If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me." n1
n1 Psalms 139:7, 9, 10.
How strengthening these words are today. They tell that man is never separated from God, who is his Life. God -- divine Truth, Life, and Love -- is never distant. He is All and everywhere. From what and to what should we flee? The conscious understanding that God, the Father, is here and now gives one the security of knowing that his home is actually right where he is. Christ Jesus explained it to his followers: "Behold, the kingdom of God is within you." n2
n2 Luke 17:21.
Many of the refugees of our day take to the sea. Others travel restlessly across the globe from one country to another, not finding a steady home. Again others, being caught, are sent back to their misery. Even when the Egyptians were chasing after him, Moses trusted that he and his people would not be harmed or lost. He relied with all his heart on God, acknowledging Him as the only governor.Obediently he followed the divine direction. He proved that as long as he did not flee from God, the divine source of all being, he would be safe, even in the most precarious situations.
Mary Baker Eddy, the Discoverer and Founder of Christian Science, explains this safety: "Man's refuge is in spiritually, 'under the shadow of the Almighty.'" n3
n3 Unity of Good,m p. 57.
In reality we can never flee from God. Can we give up our native identity, which is the reflection of God? The physical act of fleeing can never really solve our problems, though it may sometimes provide a better atmosphere in which to cope with them. Is God more active in one place than in another? Looking merely for human change, we alter the scenery and the actors. But until we spiritually rise out of the situation and turn to divine Love, we will not find our true and permanent home.
It is interesting to note that Moses worked out the great problem of the Exodus from Egypt between God, the Pharaoh, and himself, honestly, unselfishly, and bravely. He did not plan anything in anger, but with humility and obedience to God. Freedom must first have its place in thought, before it will show up in outer conditions.
In their private lives, too, people are on the move. Some hop from job to job, declaring every boss unacceptable and every colleague disgusting. And so they take the problem mentally with them, instead of cleaning their thoughts, the only place where wrong exists. Likewise, people marry again and again, hoping the next relationship will be more enjoyable. But the problem does not leave by itself. It will cling and follow after us like Pharaoh after Moses. It must be swept out of our mental state honestly and courageously.
Spiritual progress is always the most effective step out of any kind of persecution. Wherever we are aware of God's presence and acknowledge His power, there will we find the green pastures we are longing for. There we can enjoy the security of knowing that His right hand is holding us.
DAILY BIBLE VERSE I shall place you in your own land. Ezekiel 37:14