I read a verse in the Bible which I think may have been the origin of the cliché: “We are between a rock and a hard place.”
Tell the Israelites to turn back and encamp near Pi Hahiroth, between Migdol and the sea. They are to encamp by the sea, directly opposite Baal Zephon.
Well, except the Israelites would have said, “Remember that time we were stuck between Migdol and the sea?”
The cliché implies that neither of my options are very pleasant. In fact, it really doesn’t matter whether I choose the rock or the hard place, there is going to be some pain involved in my choice. One way looks bad, and the other way looks just as bad.
Ever been there?
The rock and the hard place the Israelites found themselves between was the onrushing, ticked-off, fearsome Egyptian army and the un-crossable Red Sea. ″Let’s see, would I rather have death by the sword or death by drowning?″
Between a rock and a hard place for sure!
But it gets even worse when the Israelites stopped to think, “How did we end up here? Oh, yeah, God told us to encamp here!”
Sometimes I end up between a rock and a hard place—an angry army and an uncrossable ocean—because of my own stupid choices. I can accept that. But it’s a little harder to accept my predicament when I realize that God put me here.
Why would God do this to the Israelites? Why would He do it to me? Here’s what God said:
But I will gain glory for Myself through Pharaoh and all his army, and the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD.
Is this a scary place to be? Yep! In fact the Bible says the Israelites were terrified!
But here’s the really great news: When I realize that God has put me between a rock and a hard place, stay calm! Because He brought me here, He is going to do the heavy lifting.
The Lord Himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.
God shattered the rock by wiping out the onrushing Egyptian army.
God made the hard place smooth by parting the waters of the ocean.
God was glorified and all people knew He was God.
Are you in a tough spot? Are you between a rock and a hard place? Do you feel like God put you there? If so, it’s time to stay calm. He’s in control. If He put you there, let Him fight the battle for you. Let God be glorified in smashing your rock and making your hard place smooth.