My name is Chris Thomas. I’m a fortunate husband, a father of three and Dad to five. I’m an advocate of foster care as an expression of the gospel. I’m a pastor at Raymond Terrace Community Church, a regional church based in the Hunter Valley, Australia. I mostly write about the gospel and how it informs both work and rest.

You Have Only To Be Silent

You Have Only To Be Silent

Exodus 14:13-14 (ESV)—And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again. The LORD will fight for you, and you have only to be silent.”

Moses’ exhortation to the people as they stood hemmed in on every side, facing certain death, is staggering!

“Shut your mouth and open your eyes!”

The problem with this, of course, is that I am prone to do the exact opposite.

My default response to seemingly insurmountable opposition is, ‘Shut my eyes and open my mouth’—though rarely does my mouth open to God.

If I were to re-write these two verses to represent my way of dealing with an ‘Egyptian’ problem, it would read like this:

And Chris moaned aloud to anyone who would listen, “Worry much, frantically look for an escape, see if you can figure this out. For the Egyptians you see today will probably come back again tomorrow, so prepare for the worst. You got yourself into this, so get yourself out. All you need to do is muster up enough spiritual prowess and faith and it will probably all work out in the end.”

Moses’ closing words ring out across the generations, “and you have only to be silent”.

When was the last time I simply stood silently firm; eyes fixated on the salvation of God?

I’m ashamed to even consider trying to quantify the hours, weeks, months and maybe even years since I stood this way.

What about you?

As I considered this nation-forming, history-altering event on the shores of the sea, it caused me to reflect on all the minuscule moments that have passed in my life where I too have questioned the way forward.

My 77th Song

I cried out to God for help, I cried out to God to hear me.
When I was in distress, I sought the LORD.

Yet I could not find Him.

My mind said, “God is near”, but my heart groaned, “God is far”.
Well meaning people said, “Look, God is here”, but my ears were filled with silence.

I turned to look for prints in the sand; but my search was futile.

I could not see Him.

With my mask secured in place I worked to gain His attention.
“Notice me God; give me a sign of your presence”
With my energy spent I gasped, “God – speak to me.”

But I only saw empty pages.

Where will God take me? On which path will I tread?

Then, breaking through the sound of confusion, the LORD answered in silence.

“My path leads through the sea,
my way through the mighty waters,
though my footprints are not seen.”

‘I will remember the deeds of the LORD;
yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago.
I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.’

‘Your ways, O God, are holy.
What god is so great as our God?’

From Beneath The Veneer

From Beneath The Veneer

Faithfulness vs Fruitfulness

Faithfulness vs Fruitfulness