Trusting God’s Way Is Best.
My children are rule-breakers. And it’s not surprising, because their parents are rule-breakers, too. And as much as I hate it, I must admit it's true. The Apostle Paul says it just right in his letter to the Romans, explaining "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do." - Romans 7:15-20 He goes on to say it's the sin living in our flesh causing us to continue down this rocky road of rebellion.
As we dive deeper into our study of the Book of Numbers, we realize this is the same pathway Paul's ancestors traveled centuries ago, huddled into tribes and setting out from Mt. Sinai toward the new home God promised them.
Chapter 1 of Numbers concludes with the Israelites doing everything just as the Lord commanded. They obeyed.
I’d be happy swapping my name out with the "Israelites" here, because I like seeing myself in this statement. I want to be known as the obedient child, too. God's people are hearing from Him. They've been given a game plan. The adrenaline is high, and they are ready for their God to bring them home. They’re all in!!
Yet, there’s a big detour when the people begin doubting Him and prioritizing their own comfort over God's plan.
So often we do this, too, don't we?
We read God's Word. We know He knows best. Yet, just as Eve justified her disobedience in the garden, we wonder why a good God would really deny us something that would "improve" our lives? And we begin to complain. We become ungrateful. We choose our own way. We bow to idols. We break the rules.
"Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when he heard them his anger was aroused." Numbers 11:1
Had the people not just observed God’s power draw near in a pillar of clouds? Had they not witnessed mighty plagues and walked through parted waters and watched their attackers get swallowed up by the waves behind them?
This is just like us. Have we not heard God whisper our names and draw us near? Have we not felt His presence with our hands held high in worship? Have we not seen His power in the miraculous design of a newborn child?
Yet, we still say - it's not enough.
And we grumble. And we rebel. And we envy. And we fear men more than God.
And that's where God is drawing us close to meet with Him today.
He uses the journey of His people through the wilderness to remind us He will be faithful to take care of us, yes, as we travel the rough terrain of life. But, we must also understand our choices that do not align with His character will hinder our fellowship with Him and prevent us from enjoying the fullness of His blessings.
The Book of Numbers reveals more of God's Holiness to us and explains He will let us choose if we want to live in our own way or God's way. In this book, we count a whole generation of Israelites who bear the consequence of rebellion and are not able to step foot into the promised land.
And we remember this sad ending was their choice when they begged to return to their old life in their old home.
Friends, our God is better. He's better than what we think is the best-case scenario. He is better than the life we came from. And even when the journey gets hard, we must remember where He's leading us is better, too.
It may be a bumpy road, but we’re promised the view will be worth it. Let’s press on and trust Him.
Follow our Contributing Writer - Jaclyn Warren