I was supposed to be preparing a bible study for housegroup on Wednesday, but the more I read and think about this, the more I see a bigger picture of suffering, brutality and cruelty on all sides. I find it hard to see the favour without the suffering, and because I know some history too, I know what the career path of the Jews will be over the next 3 1/2 millenia, and it ain't pretty.
The stuff I still struggle with the most is the miracles in the story vs the miracle-less present. There was none of this 'God needs to give everyone free will, so won't visit us now'. Back in the day it was more like "God says let my people go or I'll do horrible things to you until you DO let them go (p.s. you don't have a choice because I won't let you give in until it's all done)". Sure that's not an orthodox reading of it, but it's really hard not to see it like that.