The daughter of Pharaoh came to bathe in the Nile… she saw a basket among the weeds … When she opened it, she saw the child … And she had pity on him …

Ex 2:5,6

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Living your faith in the world is at least a two-level event.  One level is living faith in the larger world; in our present state that means living faith in a highly-secularized culture that is exclusionary as to God and faith, unwelcoming shall we say or dismissive, even hostile.  Such a climate demands a public posture, savvy and sometimes bravery.

The other level we engage when we think about living faith in the world is the personal level.  In that venue we encounter this: how do we live faith personally and inter-personally?  In this we are often called on to sacrifice in favor of another.

As you know as one who has been actively involved in law, politics and public policy, and studied government, economics, foreign policy, international relations and law, I teeter between the two environments: living faith in the rough and tumble of the world at large, and the challenge of living faith personally and inter-personally.  That explains itself in my daily posts.

It is to the personal and interpersonal I turn today, that is – to the practical daily application of faith, and, in particular, to living faith as a man or woman might be wise to do regardless of what a culture demands, indeed maybe because of what a culture demands.

Where am I going with this?

I am going to Moses.  Moses?  Yes, Moses.

One of the striking things about Moses is this: women played an extremely significant (life-saving) role in his life.

How so?

Moses’s mother, facing the adversity Jews encountered in Pharaoh’s Egypt, placed the baby Moses in a basket afloat on the Nile River in the hopes that he might be saved from murder or a cruel captivity.  In doing so, she posted her daughter Miriam to spy on the basket to see what might happen.  Of course, what happened is that Pharaoh’s young daughter found the child and raised the child as her own while inviting Moses’ mother to attend to the child as his nursemaid.

Yet this was not the only time a woman entered his life in a most generous and loving way.  You see when Moses fled Egypt to the desert he came to the defense of the daughters of the high priest of the Midianites who were threatened by desert shepherds and one of these daughters, Zipporah, petitioned her father that she might marry Moses.

My point?

Moses demonstrates the critical role women play in life: as caring individuals, as companions, as mates.  Likewise, Moses’ story tells us of the indispensable place of family, of spouses to one another, of the union of opposites in a man and a woman joined in matrimony.  The story underscores how the talents of each contribute to the other – how each have unique gifts and express their strength in different and complimentary ways.

The role of women in Moses life is a valuable guide to us today.  The story teaches a truth that does not dissipate or expire.

Carry the lessons that we see in the life of Moses.  Men, respect women, give them their due.  Women be proud of who you are; you need no particular adornment. Your value is God-given.

Shalom.

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