Candle Lighting time 4:24 p.m.
The local TV meteorologist occasionally points to a map and says something like this: "I'm afraid that things are going to get worse before they get better."
Such a forecast could very well have applied to Israel when God sent Moses to free His people from slavery in Egypt. The barometer of events was falling rapidly, and the dark, ominous sky of oppression would soon break forth into a churning, flashing storm of cruelty unleashed by Pharaoh.
Moses had appealed to Pharaoh to let the Hebrews go into the desert to worship God, but the king accused them of loafing on the job (Exodus 5:1,17). So he multiplied their workload, and the situation went from bad to horrible (v.18). Moses cried out in bitterness to the Lord for an explanation (vv.22-23). He found it hard to believe that a glorious exodus could be just around the corner.
The plans of the Lord were not being frustrated, however. Before conditions would get better for our ancestors, God wanted to teach both the Israelites and the Egyptians lessons. God wanted to show the Egyptians that He was the true God and how powerful He was. God wanted to teach the Israelites that He will make good on his promise of redeeming our ancestors out of Egypt performing signs and wonders by a mighty hand and an outstretched arm.
When the skies of adversity may not always clear immediately to us. Circumstances may get worse before they improve. But thank God, His promises to our ancestors will sustain us until the storm will pass.
P. S. Stay safe and warm during the snow storm and the freezing temperatures that will follow it.