Saturday, August 7, 2010

Zipporah Meets Moses

by Mary Vee
Exodus 2: 17-20

"Zipporah, you're smiling."

"What would I have to smile about?" Zipporah stopped and looked back toward the well.  "Sure the Egyptian helped us water the flocks-" She flung her long hair back.  "It was nice of him to shoo those shepherds away."

"Nice?  You call that nice?  What's the matter with you?  He saved our lives!"

Zipporah set her hands on her sister's shoulders.  "You're over-reacting.  He simply saw a group of sisters in trouble and decided to help."

"Sure, sure.  That's why your eyes nearly dropped out of your head when that lead shepherd came toward you with his sword."

"All right. Fine. I admit he scared me.  But we could've handled the situation ourselves."

"Yeah, sure."

Zipporah held her finger to her mouth.  "Here comes Father.  Let me do the talking."

Their father, Reuel, stepped out of his tent.  "My daughters, why are you back this early?  Did you have problems at the well?"

The littlest sister skipped toward her father and hugged him.  "You wouldn't believe what happened today, Father.  First we saw this ugly beggar by the well and he looked like he hadn't eaten in a hundred years and his head was all wet--probably because he dumped water on himself--then this group of scary shepherds came toward us with swords--"

"Scary shepherds--sword?"

"That's right, Father. They were very scary. And their swords were as long as Zipporah's shepherd's staff.  Well, they ran up to the well and started screaming at us to go away--but Zipporah wouldn't let them chase us away."

"They ran toward you and screamed?"

Zipporah walked closer to her father. "Maybe I should explain."

The littlest sistered frowned. "No--Zipporah. I'm telling the story.  Anyway the ugly beggar man, remember him? Well he stood up to those mean shepherds. He told them to leave us alone. But the mean shepherds wouldn't--so the ugly beggar man, he untied their camels so they ran away.  Oooo, you should have seen those mean shepherds run after their camels.  They're gonna be mad at that beggar man."

Reuel looked at his daughter Zipporah.  She raised one eyebrow and scowled at her little sister. "If I may, Father. There was a man from Egypt at the well who clearly hadn't eaten in a while." She turned toward her sister. "And he wasn't ugly!"

Zipporah turned back to her father. "Quite simply, he stood up for us against the shepherds then helped us water the flock."

Reuel sat on a nearby rock.  "So, where is this Egyptian who came to a Midian well and isn't ugly?"

Zipporah's sisters burst out laughing then tried to stop when she glared at them. "He's probably still at the well, resting."

"My daughter, why did you leave a hungry man who saved your life at the well?  Go and get him.  The least we can do is feed the poor man."

The little sister ran toward the road. "I'll go get him."

Zipporah sprinted toward her.  "No, you won't.  You need to help--help Father with--"  She looked back at the other sisters.

One of the sisters took the little one's hand. "Come. Zipporah needs to go by herself. She's the oldest."

"Ahhh. When do I get to do things by myself?"

Zipporah bent down and gave her sister a hug.  "When you're as old as I am."

*******
Moses probably looked scrawny by the time he arrived at the well.  He hadn't eaten a regular meal in days, hadn't bathed, brushed his hair, or groomed his beard.  His clothes must have been torn and ragged.  Since Moses had grown up in the palace, he most likely had been trained to fight and to lead others into battle.

During this time, travelers didn't have hotels to stay overnight.  They stopped in the city square and hoped someone would take them in for the night.  Moses hadn't found a city yet.  Why did Moses help these seven sisters?  Why didn't they invite Moses to come to their home?  What is the oldest sister's name?

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