The splitting of the Red Sea, according to Jewish tradition, is the greatest miracle ever performed. And yet we have one midrash that mentions two Israelites, Reuven and Shimon, who had a different experience.
Apparently the bottom of the sea, though safe to walk on, was not completely dry but a little muddy, like a beach at low tide.
Reuven stepped into it and curled his lip. “What is this muck?”
Shimon scowled, “There’s mud all over the place!”
“This is just like the slime pits of Egypt!” replied Reuven.
“What’s the difference?” Complained Shimon. “Mud here, mud there; it’s all the same.”
And so it went for the two of them, grumbling all the way across the bottom of the sea. And, because they never once looked up, they never understood why on the distant shore, everyone else was singing and dancing. For Reuven and Shimon the miracle never happened.
PONDER AND CONSIDER
- While the sea had parted, for Reuven and Shimon the miracle never made it’s way into their heart, or their life. This is a story about the permission to look up.
- What are the blinders you choose to wear? There is something about our myopic vision that not only affects what we see, but also our capacity to risk or embrace or celebrate or sing and dance or praise or venture or love wholeheartedly.