I’m all over the place this week…and almost forgot to post this week’s reading. Are ya still with me people??? Don’t give up!!! How completely cool would it be to finish the year together?! OK…I need you people as much as you need me! Let’s spur one another on! Let us not give up on the reading of His Word!
Numbers 6 This chapter gives the law of the Nazirite people. The Nazirites are NOT Nazarene. Jesus was Nazarene (he also touched the dead and drank wine…something the Nazirites were forbidden to do). Nazirite is a Hebrew word that means “to dedicate, to set apart”. The Lord wants us to be set apart from the world. Campbell Morgan said that when the chruch was the least like the world, the church did the most for the world. Don’t you want this to be true of our lives?!
Numbers 10 – The silver trumpets…these trumpets were to be blown at times of war and in times of celebration—to remind the Lord to rescue and to remind the Lord of His convenant. I’ve never thought about “reminding the Lord” so the way these verses were worded made me think a bit.
The first 10 chapters in Numbers record a nation obeying the Lord…good times. But what is to come (Numbers 10-22) for the most part is a record of their unbelief and failure. Put your seatbelt on. They are getting ready to march on God’s command. And over and over when they marched Moses will repeat “Arise, O Lord, and let your enemies be scattered! Let them flee before you!” Moses wanted the people to know it was the Lord leading and it would be the Lord leading them to victory. I love that plea before the Lord as it takes me back to my college years. I can hear the prayer of my old pastor’s wife praying this very prayer—over and over she would pray, “Arise, O Lord, and let your enemies be scattered! Let them flee before you!”
I think of many children and woman across the world in bondage. ARISE, O LORD, AND LET YOUR ENEMIES BE SCATTERED! LET THEM FLEE BEFORE YOU! Lead the least of these to victory—to freedom.
I think of a little 3 year old girl in Uganda “Baby M” who needs a family but will not be freed for one…ARISE, O LORD, AND LET YOUR ENEMIES BE SCATTERED! LET THEM FLEE BEFORE YOU!
I think of victims caught in abusive relationships and homes…children scared and feeling like there is no where to turn…ARISE, O LORD, AND LET YOUR ENEMIES BE SCATTERED! LET THEM FLEE BEFORE YOU!
Let us blow our horns together! I picture the people in Who-ville who can’t be heard…but together they blew their horns and ole faithful Horton the Elephant heard them. And when he heard them he fought for them. How often do I look online or hear about groups that are rescuing and think, “Good for them! That’s awesome.” So, I don’t blow my horn. So many are still in bondage. Let us blow our horns loudly—let us cry out to the Lord…Arise, O Lord, and let your enemies be scattered! Rescue the people! And use us Lord to do it!
Today’s reading blew me away. SOOOO GOOD. Amazing how you could read the same words each and every year—but how it can speak so different to you where you are. So…once again—bear with me.
The people complain to Moses. And BAM. The Lord sets a fire to rage among them. Moses prays for it to stop. And it does. As if this wasn’t enough to open up the eyes of the people—they start to complain AGAIN. “Oh for this…” and “wish we had that…” and “all we get is this old manna!” Moses hears their complaints—and both he and the Lord become angry.
I hear ya Moses. I’m diggin’. But this is the way of the world. I often say, “Africa will mess you up.” It’s perspective. And perspective—well, changes everything. China messed me up long before Africa did—Africa was just the icing on the cake. We live in an incredibly RICH culture. We not only have homes to live in—but we have food in our frig, air conditioner and heat and our children have the joys of sports. Really, you and I know the list could go on and on AND ON. But often, we become the Israelites. Even in our attempt of sacrificial living, we look to the left or the right and think “Wish I could get a pedicure.” A pedicure? Am I serious? Did I seriously have that thought? Yes, I did. “Wish I could buy some nice jeans”…and again, the list can go on and on AND ON. But we have plenty. We have our manna. And there is nothing more frustrating to our Creator than our complaining about His provision. But there is something more saddening to Him.
Those in need. The poor. The widow. The orphan.
10 Moses heard all the families standing in the doorways of their tents whining, and the Lord became extremely angry. Moses was also very aggravated. 11 And Moses said to the Lord, “Why are you treating me, your servant, so harshly? Have mercy on me! What did I do to deserve the burden of all these people? 12 Did I give birth to them? Did I bring them into the world? Why did you tell me to carry them in my arms like a mother carries a nursing baby? How can I carry them to the land you swore to give their ancestors? 13 Where am I supposed to get meat for all these people? They keep whining to me, saying, ‘Give us meat to eat!’ 14 I can’t carry all these people by myself! The load is far too heavy! 15 If this is how you intend to treat me, just go ahead and kill me. Do me a favor and spare me this misery!”
Do you feel like you are the only one some days??? Do you feel like you are carrying burdens by yourself??? Some days, is it just too overwhelming that like Moses you just wanna say “take me now!” rather than “use me for your glory, I trust you, and I can do all things through YOU because YOU give me strength.” Oh yeah, like Moses some times I feel like saying, “Do me a favor and spare me this misery.” Can you believe he said that? Some times, I have felt it—I just haven’t gotten the guts to say it…outloud.
You are not alone.
He will provide.
He will call others to join you.
His yoke is easy, and His burden is light.
Trust in Him. Don’t give up. And keep Yours eyes on the cross. Do not look to the left or the right. Fight the good fight that He has called YOU to live for—-for HIS glory!
Wednesday’s reading to come (Numbers 14-15:41)