And when Pharaoh drew nigh, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and, behold, the Egyptians marched after them; and they were sore afraid: and the children of Israel cried out unto the LORD. And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness. (Exodus 14:10-12)
The Israelites had been in bondage to the Egyptians for some 400 years. They had just left after God miraculous deliverance of them through ten plagues. They are free.
One would think that their faith in God would be at an all-time high. However, this was not the case. As the verses above reveal, they quickly become fearful when they realize that the Egyptians are pursuing them. Their initial response was correct–they “cried out unto the LORD”. But their heart wasn’t in it. Their true feelings are exposed to Moses.
They see two options. Option 1: Be a slave in Egypt. Option 2: Die now. Given that choice, they opted for the former.
Like we often do, the Israelites neglected to exercise their faith and see another option–the God option. Moses lays it out for them.
And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The LORD shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace. (Exodus 14:13-14)
Here is God’s threefold plan. First, fear not. God is in control. Second, stand still. The plan will be carried out by God and He would let them know when to move. Third, watch God work. This is the exciting part. Moses makes it very clear that this victory, like the previous one in Egypt, would not be accomplished by the Israelites’ power or ingenuity. It was all God. This is called dependence.
This, in essence, is the God option. When we face difficulties, especially of a seemingly impossible nature, this is the option we need to exercise. Depend on God. Have faith in Him. Wait for His leading, see where He is working, and move in that direction.