It Can’t Compare

by Feb 7, 2022Devotional

One of my life’s repeating stories has been Jochebed and young Moses.  I’ll confess that once again, my needle’s stuck.  (If you’re old enough to have grown up with record players, you’ll totally understand.)

As I do household jobs, I find myself praying, “I cannot compete with the treasure of Egypt.  I cannot compete with the knowledge and glitter of the world and the myriad of things being offered.” 

Surely that is how Jochebed felt with her son Moses.  As she nursed him, sang to him, held him, and talked to him, there was a lot she didn’t have.

At that time, her people, the Israelites, did not have the law.  They did not have a list of things to follow that bound them all together.  They did not have the ten commandments or Scriptures written down.

Yet they stayed together.  What kept them together?  It must have been the awareness that God was real that they passed down for four hundred years—the stories of their fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Jochebed’s determination would make more sense if it were after the Israelites saw the miracle of their freedom.  After they saw the Red Sea crossing.  After they saw manna in the desert.  After they saw water from the rock.  After they saw pharaoh and his men drowned.  After they saw the plagues that were sent to Egypt.

But when Moses was a little boy, his family had none of this first-hand experience.  And Moses still chose to identify with the people of God, seeing none of these miracles.  Whatever Jochebed taught him for those few short years was so real that it captured his heart.

He saw the best that Egypt had to offer…its fabulous places, its wealth, palaces, rich men, beautiful women, and fast chariots.  He heard everything that they learned in the schools…philosophy, mathematics, and higher learning.  These influencers were so educated and sophisticated, unlike his mother and father and their people who were slaves.

The contrast must have been startling.

I keep coming back to the image of Jochebed walking up the steps to deliver Moses to pharaoh’s daughter.  My imagination has them going past the sphinx and intimidating structures as she clutched Moses’s hand. 

What went through her mind? 

“I can’t compete!”  At least that is what would have been in my mind.

Moses probably would be taught in weaponry, war techniques, ancient scrolls, languages, and leadership.  What all do you learn when you are the son of pharaoh’s daughter in ancient Egypt?  What is offered to you?  What is held out that would be tempting?  A lot!

And yet, we know that it did not compare.  Moses grew up, saying, “I would rather be identified with God’s people.  I choose to suffer with the children of God rather than to enjoy the pleasure of sin for a season.”

It did not compare.

Just knowing that God has that power does my heart good!  Just knowing that when I drum up all my resources, and they don’t seem to stack very high against a world with higher education and philosophies and beautiful women and powerful men…God is used to working with circumstances like that.

The secret is to see Him who is invisible.  Then there is no contest.  Not just for my children, but also for me. 

Lord, help me to see “Him who is invisible”! 

Then the things of this earth will grow strangely dim.  All the piddly things that I get caught up in will seem washed out and pale in comparison.

“One glimpse of His dear face all sorrows will erase.”

One day that will be a reality, but even today, I want to get a spiritual glimpse.  Then it will be no contest.

It won’t compare.


  1. Steph

    This is so beautiful, I love….. Lord, help me to see “Him who is invisible”! Amen With the world screaming loud it takes focus, diligence and dedication.

    • Elizabeth Hamilton

      You’re right!

  2. Rachel

    Wow!! Lord help me!!

  3. Justin

    This was very good! Thank you for sharing!

    • Elizabeth Hamilton

      Thank you, Justin!

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