“They made camp at Rephidim, but there was no water there to drink. They complained to Moses and said, ‘Give us water to drink’. Moses answered, ‘Why are you complaining? Why are you putting the Lord to the test?”.

Ex 17:1, 2 GNB

Sometimes life is just one problem after another. A long journey on foot through a huge empty desert was always going to be fraught with difficulties. Especially as that corner of the Mediterranean Sea is one of the hottest in the Middle East.

By the time they had reached Rephidim the lack of water and the heat caught them. “One would expect that they could handle it. Humble prayer to the Lord, who wanted to supply their every need, is all that was required. But no! They fell into the same disaster as before by keeping their eyes on the problem instead of on the Lord. Therefore we see them – yet again – suffering tension, frustration, failure and sin! However, they were tormented by thirst. The dreadful thirst of a dry hot desert can leave a person crazed and unable to think. It was another test of faith and trust in the Lord – all the greater as they felt the wilderness close in on them, cutting off all possibility of their running back to the sea” (F. Hogan, Words of Life From Exodus, p154).

And the acute problems we face, sometimes every day, can floor us too. They test our faith and our equanimity, as well as our maturity. We know that everyone has a breaking point, and we wonder if we are reaching ours. Remember Moses in this. He never let his faith in the Lord waver. Hang in and hang on. Tackle your problems one by one. Pray constantly and you will, with God’s help, overcome.


Lord, help me overcome all my problems.