A new life?

Today was an unusual day, my father came home from his labour exhausted, but more than usual, I could hear my parents from the other room argue about this man they call Moses; my father is convinced he’s a fraud. He claims to have met with Yahweh at some burning bush, I could hear the women talking today as we completed our chores, and they say he is going to help us get delivered from the strong and ruthless hand of this Pharaoh.

My mother used to tell me stories when I was young of a man called Joseph who knew this God and how he saved our people by following Gods commands, but I thought they were just stories; it’s been 400 years from Joseph died, and most people don’t even mention his name any more, these things my mother shares are not spoken of around here. Maybe this Moses can help? There are many who think he can’t, my poor father has come home worked to the bone, his arms are tired, his back breaking, and Pharaoh is making them work twice as hard because he was insulted by Moses requests.

If there is a God out there, If Yahweh is watching down on us I am hoping he can rescue us before Pharaoh works my father so hard he kills him. 

 

******

It turns out Moses is from around here. As the story goes his mother Jocabed sent him of in a basket into the Nile to save his life 80 years ago when he was just a baby, Pharaoh had tried to kill all the baby boys, this sounds so strange to me, what kind of person wants to kill babies? But Moses was found by the Pharaohs daughter who loved him as her own until he grew up to be a man. Then he murdered an Egyptian for mistreating an Israelite slave and so of on the run he went.

40 years passed and now he is back with these untamed ideas… as you can tell it’s been a few curious weeks not knowing what to accept as true. Moses has gone and challenged Pharaoh to let Gods people go into the Wilderness to worship. Pharaoh has not only frowned on the idea, but he brought down the wrath of this Yahweh on Egypt! Plague after plague has tormented us, from the water in Egypt turning to blood; EVEN in the Nile, there was no water anywhere to drink from, then a plague of frogs covered the whole land, invading everywhere even the palace, it was disgusting, and then a swarm of Gnats, I just do not know why Moses is bringing all of these stories here for us to be tormented further, as if Pharaoh and his servants are not ferocious enough to us. It’s been dreadful. All of these things have invaded our homes, our livelihood, our animals… it’s so hard to fathom what could possibly happen next. 

Moses, with his brother Aaron insists that Pharaoh will let us go but these days are getting longer and the plagues are horrid. I’m not sure what kind of God treats his own people in this way. I’m truly hoping that he will look down upon our misery and rescue us. 

 

******

Tomorrow is the day where this Yahweh who is supposed to be saving us will come through on his word. Moses has given strict instructions as to what is to take place today, my family is small there is only my father, mother, brother and I, so Kyra and her family next door will come and spend time with us going through this process. I’ve known Kyra for as long as I can remember, our brothers have always played together and now that they are a little older I always suspected that they would learn our father’s trades and begin working for the Egyptians. According to Aaron, Moses assures him we will be gone tonight, so many plagues have past, though strangely Goshen has been protected from the remaining ones, it’s as though this Yahweh is showing distinction and favour towards us. The Egyptians have dealt with Boils, dead livestock, hail and locusts, darkness, and now Moses says Pharaoh will let the people go because of the last plague, which is the most horrific of all; the plague of death. In Egypt tonight the first born son, and animal will die if we do not follow a certain set of rules. It is unimaginable, it is unfathomable… the whole nation is in fear and trembling. 

We are to take a lamb that is 1 year old without spot or blemish, we are to kill it at twilight and take a hyssop branch and dip it in the lamb’s blood. Then put the blood on the door frames of our home. Once this is complete no one is to leave, as they are only safe under the blood stained doorposts. Then the animal is to be roasted whole over a fire but not boiled for whatever reason, then it’s to be eaten with bitter herbs and bread made without yeast. These ways are new to us, but Moses and Aaron say this will be called the Passover feast and will remind us for years to come of the night God Passed over our homes and spared our brothers.

We are so fearful, my mother has made my father go through this process with her so many times today, we are so afraid that we will get it wrong, even one step out of place would mean we could lose Joshua, he is my only brother and I couldn’t imagine life without him. None of the things God has done so far makes any sense to me, but I stand here today intrigued by his character. This God has stood up to Pharaoh and has abolished every single God the Egyptians serve. From the God of the Nile, to the God of the Desert, to the God of the sun, and the crops! This Yahweh is not playing games and clearly wants to be known. I am terrified for my family and my nation, yet so intrigued by Him. 

 

*******

The morning has come, the wailing, the weeping, the sound of death that has flooded Egypt is harrowing. People are mourning the loss of their loved ones, the weeping is heart wrenching and my young confused heart is breaking for them. There is nothing we can do to help, because Pharaoh has told us to go. They summoned Moses and Aaron through the night and has commanded us to leave. We have gathered our final things and are on the move Joshua included. There is thousands of us. The Egyptians were pretty much pushing us out, giving us their things, jewellery, fine clothes and materials, jewels, and silver, bronze and gold.

We have journeyed from Rameses to Sukkoth, here we will rest until Yahweh says to move again. The nation that was yesterdays slaves is today’s rescued. This God, this Yahweh who makes no sense, who has destroyed and defeated Pharaoh has pulled through on His word has rescued us. The nation who was once afraid of Pharaoh now stands the richest of nations and is free from the grips of this evil torturer, but who is this God and what does he want with us Israelites? From here, I have no idea where we will go, there is talk of a promised land filled with milk and honey. This God that Moses talks of has truly captured the nation of Israel’s attention.

___________________
What you have just read is a biblical fiction excerpt written in the diary of a young Israelite girl during the days of the plagues found in Exodus. While I studied this piece of scripture my mind ran on and wondered what a child dealt with during this time.  This is a rough idea of what I believe she would have said. To read the biblical account read Exodus chapters 7-11. 

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