Starting with the passage from Acts, Stephen is giving his defense to the Council, who have authority over all things religious in nature. He is explaining the history of the Exodus from Egypt, and the reality of Israel turning away from Jehovah, primarily because of impatience. God was not acting fast enough, Moses was gone on the mountain too long to suit them, so they cried out for Aaron to make a statue resembling the gods of Egypt. They resorted to the gods of their past, while captive in slavery, even though they were now set free by the mighty hand of Jehovah, who was still present with them. The pillar of smoke was there by day and fire by night, they were still eating manna daily, yet they were unsettled as to whom to serve.
Exodus 13 tells the same story which again explicitly declares that Jehovah was ever present with Israel in this journey. He never left them, always led them in safety, avoiding the way through Philistia, which surely would have sparked a war with them. He guided them through the Wadi Wadir to the Red Sea, which directed the pursuing Egyptians only one path of attack. They took the bones of Joseph with them to again provide them with a presence of fulfilled prophecy that Jehovah was surely protecting and providing for them as a people chosen.
Psalms 102. 1-17. The cry here from the writer shows again the frailness of our souls. WE, as mankind, never seem to remember God’s presence with us. We can’t remember His promises to us. He describes his life like smoke that disappears so quickly, but might have referred more accurately to our memories of God’s care for us. If God isn’t jumping up and down with a flag in front of us constantly we start losing hope in Him and feeling alone, and crying that He doesn’t care, or hear our prayers. Job cried out, “how faint is the whisper” of His answers to prayer. It’s almost like seeing the Israelites with their mouths stuffed with Manna, muttering “why isn’t God providing for us.”
Jehovah is the only true God of the heavens and earth. He cares for you, He loves you, He provides for you, protects you, and is ever present with you. Don’t forget that. He has a direction for your life, unique for you. He patiently directs your path, like He did for Israel, and is always hearing your prayers. Sometimes we forget these truths, we get ahead of ourselves impatiently wanting things right now. It is so amazing to see God’s direction looking at the past of our lives, yet so hard to trust Him for the future. Let’s not be like fickle Israel, unstable, self serving, and impatient. Let’s be like a wise man who calmly waits upon the Lord, renewing our strength daily.