Another thing jumped out at me concerning God’s hand in the events of our lives. Verse 17 says God led the people by the desert toward the Red Sea, a longer route, because He knew if they took the short cut and had to go to war, they would want to give up and go back to Egypt.
It speaks to me of choice. God didn’t make them go into the desert. He led them, yes. But they chose to follow His lead. He led them that way for their own good, because He knew they could choose to go back to Egypt, and He gave them the chance to keep moving ahead toward the Promised Land.
It seems to me God directs our steps, but whether or not we follow His lead is up to us. Following where He leads helps us avoid hardships, even though the road might be longer. It might not be the road that makes sense to us, or looks to be the easier route.
God is directing our path. And if we follow Him, it’s always going to work out for our good, and His glory.