Thursday, May 17, 2012
Cinderella in Reverse
Who is the girl whom never once dreamed of being Cinderella? That is enchanted by similar stories where the servant becomes the princess? All the hard work, all the poverty and oppression are left behind and a life filled with glamour and luxuries awaits her.
But what if you were a princess and one day became a servant? Would you find it unjust? Would you accept this new position? Do you think that you would be a happy servant or would you live in anguish for not being a princess anymore?
Let me tell you the story of someone that went through a similar situation. In reality, it is not the story of a princess, but of a prince. A prince of the most important kingdom of the world during his time, with the right to all the kingdom's luxuries. A prince that spent 40 years of his life living in a palace. A prince that was actually the son of a servant but who was adopted by a princess as her own son. His name was Moses.
Moses was from the people of Israel, and during the time of his birth, his people were under the hands of Egypt's Pharaoh who did not want the people of Israel to multiply too much and risk a revolt, so Pharaoh ordered that all baby boys were killed. However Moses, when born, was such a beautiful baby that his mother did not want to give him up to be killed, so she hid him for three months in her house. But after three months, there was no way of hiding him anymore so she places him in a protected basket floating on a river. Pharaoh's daughter finds the baby and decides to adopt him as her own and the life of a prince starts for Moses.
But Moses "by faith, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin; esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he looked to the reward" Hebrews 11:24-26. Affliction? Reproach? Who would want to receive affliction and reproach instead of living the life of a prince?
Moses leaves behind the life of a prince because he sees the invisible. He recognizes that his prince's life would last a few decades, and then what? What would happen after his body had been embalmed and placed inside a pyramid?
However, Moses not only leaves behind his palace's life, he also follows what God wanted him to do and his last 40 years of life are spent in the desert as the leader of a people that did not follow his leadership very well. In the desert? How could Moses think that he made the right choice when everything seems to have ended very bad?
But don't get tricked by the details. The desert is empty of pleasures for the body that Egypt could offer, but it is overflowing with treasures for the soul. Moses was privileged to watch God performs miracle after miracle to rescue the people of Israel from the hands of the Egyptians. And when Moses is in the desert something wonderful happens: "So the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend." Exodus 33:11 Face to face with the God of the Universe? Do you think that while in the desert Moses missed being face to face with the important Pharaoh? I am sure that he did not, he was face to face with someone far more important.
"So he was there with the Lord forty days and forty nights; he neither ate bread nor drank water. And He wrote on the tablets the words of the covenant, the ten commandments. Now it was so, when Moses came down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the testimony were in Moses' hand when he came down from the mountain) that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone while he talked with Him." Exodus 34:28-29 The skin of his face was shining!!
Moses could have spent all his 120 years of life living a comfortable life inside Egypt's palace and never have his face shining with the glory of God. Moses could have spent all his life feeding himself from every fabulous dish from the palace's table and never had experience what was like to be sustained by no food and no water, just by God alone. When Moses accepted to take the reproach of Christ and suffer with the people of God, he finds out that what he had left behind was nothing compared with what he had gained.
What about you? When you look at Christ dying at that cross, do you see a despised man, or do you see your Savior that opened the way to heaven so that you could also see the glory of God?
What about you that have already accepted Christ as your Savior? When God asks you to go to the desert suffer with the people of God, can you picture Him calling you for a life of treasures for the soul? To a future of reward?
Because it is not Cinderella that lives happily ever after, but those that accept the reproach of Christ. "The image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation." Colossians 1:15