Sometimes things have to get worse before they can get better, which is not always a very comforting thought. In this chapter, things get a lot worse for God's people. They are still slaves in Egypt; they are still having to make bricks; but now their job has been made a lot more difficult, and furthermore the king is now angry with them.
Not surprisingly, the people express their frustration to Moses (vv.20-21), and so not surprisingly, Moses expresses his frustration to God (vv.22-23):
Why are you doing this?
Why did you bring me into this?
Over the last four Sunday mornings I have been talking about leadership based on some characters in Genesis. Moses was also called into a position of leadership, and we get the impression that throughout his life he felt quite uncomfortable as a leader. Being a leader placed him in a vulnerable position - the people were looking at him - which was especially unsettling when he himself couldn't work out what God was doing.
But despite his weaknesses and insecurities, Moses had one very important thing going for him. Like the other leaders God calls, he doesn't always get things right, but he does have an open and honest relationship with God. So he is able to ask God 'why?'
In the light of Exodus 5, how can you pray this week for those in leadership? How can you show leadership yourself this week?