Imagine that you are living as a slave. A mistreated, overworked, no freedom slave. Now, imagine that you are on your way to LIVE at DISNEY WORLD. . .or make that Hawaii. . .or a secluded cabin in the Rockies. . . .let's just call it, the promised land.
Now, imagine that it takes a bit to get there. It IS far away, ya know. And, on the way there. . .well, life isn't all that easy. So, you complain. . .over and over and over again!!!
This is the Israelites in Numbers. . . .for chapters upon chapters upon CHAPTERS! OH my dear!!! They are the biggest bunch of whiners ever! I get so disgusted. . (said in the whiniest voice you can muster) OH MOSES, why didn't you just let us die in slavery? Oh Moses, we want Meat. Oh, Moses. . .moses. . .moses. . .
Seriously! I am shocked that Moses didn't just tell them to shut the heck up. In fact, when the Lord got tired of them and wanted to punish them all it was MOSES that begged the Lord for mercy on their behalf.
I need to be Moses. I often believe myself to be God and my children to be the Israelites. In fact, I'm more like an Israelite myself. I need to remember THAT and maybe act like Moses on my children's behalf. I struggle so much right now with the whining thing. It's the age, partly (with an almost 3 year old GIRL) and just plain human nature. . but I often do not handle it well. It overwhelms me. It pushes my buttons and it just plain frustrates me! I want to be a Moses to their Israelite behavior. I want to call them to something more while positioning myself on their behalf.
The truth is. . .I need to BE a moses before calling them to that. I need to model that behavior. I don't want to be an Israelite on the way to the promised land and bickering along the way. I don't want my kids to be either. I desparately want us to be a house full of God-worshippers. I want to remember what the Israelites didn't and to teach my kids the same. . .
I HAVE A PERSONAL GOD with a BIG PLAN!
We were discussing the parable of the Pearl of Great Price in church on Sunday. So often we use this parable to remind us of the value of the kingdom. We think of the pearl. We miss the price. The truth is, that man had to go. and sell. everything! There was a price, a sacrifice of great pain along the way to the treasure. We do the same thing with the book of Ruth (just finished up this study last night). We see the beautiful interchange between Ruth and Boaz and watch the love unfold. oh happy day. We miss the great sacrifice and personal courage that it took to get there.
All of that reminds me that I DON'T know the big picture. I don't know the end game. I just know what I've been told,
"Therefore, we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far ouweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
When we weigh our lives and find it lacking we are using the wrong scales. When I complain or feel overwhelmed, I am looking at the wrong scale.
I think I'm going to memorize this section of scripture. Want to join me? I don't want to be an Israelite. I want to be a JOY to my personal God. I want to fix my eyes on what is unseen. I want to keep my eyes on the prize and focus on HIM instead of the struggles of this world.
**Hint: You may need to remind me of this! When I tell you that the kids are making me "lose my mind" remind me of the eternal glory of raising Godly kids.. ya know, I never know what God has in store for these precious ones! To get peed on by the next Billy Graham or the one who may reach an unreached people group, or may use his/her skills and abilities to touch people for Jesus in any way. . .well, it's all worth it in the end!