"Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down to Egypt to live there for a while because the famine was severe." Genesis 12:10
"So Joseph settled his father and his brothers in Egypt and gave them property in the best part of the land, the district of Rameses, as Pharaoh directed." Genesis 47:11
"When Israel was a child, I loved him,
and out of Egypt I called my son." Hosea 11:1
"So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, 15 where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: “Out of Egypt I called my son." Matthew 2:14-16
Do you ever wonder where a thought came from? This is one of those thoughts, and one of those times. Last week when I was at the library, I was looking for something different to pick up and read. I like to read books in a series, because then if I like the first one, I'm guaranteed a few more books that should keep my attention, so I was looking for a new series. I wandered up and down the aisles looking for something that was not in my normal scope of reading material, and I found a series of books based in ancient Egypt. Perfect. The books have turned out to be enjoyable, and I would definitely seek out the author again, but the last few days, as I've been reading this fictional story, I've really found myself lost in thought, thinking about Egypt,and really feeling a need to pray for that country.
It really got me thinking about Egypt and the role the country played several times in the Bible. More than once, Egypt served as a sanctuary for those who were beloved by God. Up above I have a few of the primary examples. Abraham sought refuge in Egypt during a time of famine. Joseph was sold to Egyptian slavers and through that action, God used Joseph to save the entire nation of Israel from the worst famine ever. Later on, after the birth of Jesus, an angel spoke to Joseph and told him to take Jesus and Mary to Egypt for a time- they would be safe there.
Honestly, many times when God brings a country to my mind, and I spend time praying for that country, a day or so, or even a few days later, something major happens in that country. I will never forget feeling burdened for the country of Haiti, and spending time praying for it, and a specific orphanage in that country, and then a week after I started praying, the country was ravaged by the earthquake- with no major damage to the orphanage. About a month ago, I really felt the need to pray for the country of Indonesia, which has been wrestling with an erupting volcano for several weeks now.
It makes me realize that God loves all the people in this world, and sometimes He wants us to intervene on behalf of those who don't know to cry out to Him. So this week, while this is the day we spend time praying for President Obama, I want to ask my readers to join me in spending time praying for the country of Egypt. I did read in the news online that there have been tensions lately between Muslim and Christian groups- nothing super serious, but it's a frequent occurrence in the country. I want to pray this morning that God would become real to the people of Egypt. If they look to their history, they've seen the glory of God first-hand with the plagues, but they may have forgotten. 80 percent of the religious population in Egypt calls themselves Muslim, and in a country full of other gods and myths and religions, it is my prayer this morning that Jesus would become real to the people of Egypt. I pray that they would know that this beloved son, who they themselves sheltered for a time, is their Savior too. That He loves them so much and wants them to know His Name and His Love.
May God Bless the nation of Egypt and keep the precious people who live their safe. May He open their eyes and soften their hearts to hearing the gospel and hearing about the love of Jesus for their country. God loves the people of Egypt, and I look forward to the day I will walk the streets of Heaven with my Egyptian brothers and sisters.