Garlicks of Egypt


Am I surprised? That what… you ask? Well, that you are surprised! Anyways, I am not about to write another article on the umpteenth wonder of the world – I think we have many of that already; and we all know that the pyramids are actually the only wonder associated with Egypt. However, I am tempted to believe garlics were at some point in history more popular than the pyramids – or at least, that’s the opinion I can gather from a particular story in the bible; and if you were not one those folks that were so far away from Sunday school in their younger years, then I guess you will be familiar with the story as well. But before I tell this story, I would like to share a thought with you, and a question to accompany my thought…
Just thinking: Oh! The good old days!
Now a Question: What’s good about the old days?
Someone once said life is understood by looking backwards; reliving the so called good old days, but nonetheless must be lived by looking forward – surging into the ever daunting unknown! It is however quite unfortunate that many of us attempt the impossible, and foolishly so, by trying to live our lives based on the yesterday. In fact, some of us practically live in the past! Oops!
Needless to say, I must agree with you that our experiences do form an integral part of our lives, but then we must learn to let go of the past – either sweet or sour, and embrace what the future holds for us. Yesterday is gone and there is absolutely nothing you can do about the victories or failures that came with it; today is here and left for you to either manage or mismanage; and tomorrow is ours to grasp – a barrage of opportunities to explore and exploit… and did the Bible not say ‘the just shall live by their faith’?… and that hope that is seen is not hope at all? So there leaves no excuse for living in the past and counting on the success of yesteryears…
Sometime in history, the Israelites were on a journey to the Promised Land – a land flowing with milk and honey. Wow! Wouldn’t the mere thought of that just blow any mind? So it was a journey that started with the great exodus from every form of oppression that characterized their last days in the land of Egypt, and as such, was such a feat of deliverance from Pharaoh and co… but then, it was a journey so just like any other journey in life and like life itself – there is always a THEN, a HERE and a THERE…
Often times we find ourselves coming from THEN – the glorious or inglorious past, and on our way to THERE – the ever promising future full of all possibilities; but then we are stuck HERE, the present NOW – that critical moment.
And so it was with the Israelites, having enjoyed the great deliverance from Egypt and very hopeful of arriving at a land flowing with milk and honey, clad with giant grapes and all sorts; they got trapped in the present – a wilderness – home to nothing but nothingness at its peak… and the story changed! You could imagine I heard one of them declare ‘Oh, the good old days!!!’ Seriously? I couldn’t help but shudder! I mean… what’s that? They even went on to describe how living in Egypt was such a delight – how they enjoyed such things as melons, cucumbers, onions and garlicks! Now just imagine the list. Then I thought to myself; was it not the same Egypt where the Israelites had no straw to bake their bricks? Where the ten plagues were wrought, and the Israelites miraculously spared? Ingrates! I shouted. These guys are so myopic… but then I realized I am not that much better from my forbears.
Just as they did, many of us also forget God’s graciousness and all we do is just complain in the face of the slightest challenges. Did the Bible not rightly say that God is not a man that He should lie? Has He promised a thing and not see it to completion? So stay off reliving the good old days and stop dreaming about the garlicks you tasted in Egypt. Rather, be hopeful and look forward to a land flowing with milk and honey indeed. Brace up for the future ahead of you.
God bless.