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Session 13

How remembering the past shapes the present

Read: Exodus 13

When it feels like we’re wandering aimlessly or stuck in a hopeless situation, promises like “the best is yet to come” can seem applicable to everyone but us. We’ve all had these days. The ones when we’ve lost loved ones, when relationships are severed, when our kids seem out of control, or our jobs are too much. It’s those days when we’re so overwhelmed by what’s happening in front of us that hope for tomorrow feels impossible to comprehend.

The Israelites were experiencing this kind of hopelessness after leaving Egypt. They left their homes and everything they knew on a promise God had made to Abraham years ago. They were going after God’s best for them, the Promised Land. It wasn’t a sure thing, but they were trusting that God’s word was good. Although God bypassed the Philistine road and protected Israel from war, the Israelites were still sent to wander the wilderness.

Experiencing the wilderness was necessary in order for the Israelites to get where God was leading them, but having hope when wandering isn’t easy. In Exodus 13, God shows us a practical way to have hope in tough times: Remember His past faithfulness and know that He always makes good on His word. This practice of remembering is the reason God tells Moses to consecrate every firstborn male to Him during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This act would serve as a lasting reminder of the day God brought Israel out of Egypt.

The wilderness seems like a hopeless place, especially when all we have is a promise to hold on to, but the key to having hope is remembering where we’ve been and holding on to where we’re going. God went ahead of the Israelites in the wilderness, and He’s going ahead of us, too. There is hope. We just have to remember God is good and He is for us. We are not alone today, and the best really is yet to come.

Reflect:

  • Where in your past do you see God’s provision or protection?
  • What are one or two promises about God’s character you’ve seen Him prove true in the past?

1

What if the right thing costs you everything?

What if the right thing costs you everything?

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2

Are you in need of rescue?

Are you in need of rescue?

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3

Help is on the way

Help is on the way

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4

Looking for a sign that God is with you?

Looking for a sign that God is with you?

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5

What to do when God doesn’t meet your expectations

What to do when God doesn’t meet your expectations

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6

Will you let God set you free?

Will you let God set you free?

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7

Great success often starts with failure

Great success often starts with failure

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8

How to break a cycle of regret

How to break a cycle of regret

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9

What is your purpose in life?

What is your purpose in life?

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10

When you can’t see clearly

When you can’t see clearly

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11

We are all enslaved to something

We are all enslaved to something

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12

Freedom comes from following instructions

Freedom comes from following instructions

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13

How remembering the past shapes the present

How remembering the past shapes the present

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14

How to win the war

How to win the war

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15

How to celebrate life, even when it sucks

How to celebrate life, even when it sucks

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16

God’s presence is greater than His presents

God’s presence is greater than His presents

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17

God is our banner

God is our banner

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18

The gift we never knew we needed

The gift we never knew we needed

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19

The one person who never breaks a promise

The one person who never breaks a promise

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20

A new way to think about God’s commands

A new way to think about God’s commands

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21

Revenge isn’t as sweet as you think it will be

Revenge isn’t as sweet as you think it will be

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22

What if you are the thief?

What if you are the thief?

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23

Timing is everything

Timing is everything

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24

The key to effectiveness in the church

The key to effectiveness in the church

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25

Why you should give God your best

Why you should give God your best

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26

Worship is more than singing on Sunday

Worship is more than singing on Sunday

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27

What it means to be set apart

What it means to be set apart

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28

You were made to make a difference

You were made to make a difference

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29

Is impatience getting the better of you?

Is impatience getting the better of you?

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30

You’ve got a friend in me

You’ve got a friend in me

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31

You can come to God after a mistake

You can come to God after a mistake

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32

What happens when everyone gives what God says

What happens when everyone gives what God says

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33

How to do more than you ever thought possible

How to do more than you ever thought possible

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34

How to prepare our hearts for worship

How to prepare our hearts for worship

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