Message from the Monthly Flyer July 2016
Numbers 20:1-5 –KJV- Then came the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, into the desert of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there. And there was no water for the congregation: and they gathered themselves together against Moses and against Aaron. And the people chode with Moses, and spake, saying, Would God that we had died when our brethren died before the LORD! And why have ye brought up the congregation of the LORD into this wilderness, that we and our cattle should die there? And wherefore have ye made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in unto this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink.
Complain after complain. After their exodus out of the slavery in Egypt, the Bible records many events where the children of Israel kept complaining. Even though they experienced the power, the greatness and the faithfulness of God countless times, they were still so easily prompt to complain when something did not go the way they wished it would. They complained about the lack of water, the lack of food, they wished they had remained in Egypt and would have rather died there because of the difficulties they faced. They hardly or never took time to remember the good things that God had done for them all this while. He protected them all the way through and led them during the day with a pillar of cloud and by night with a fiery pillar (Exodus 13:21). His presence was with them; He was their light and He was their pillar of security, guidance and protection. But they did not get that. The Bible says that in those 40 years where they wandered in the desert, their clothes did not wear out and their shoes did not swell (Deuteronomy 8:4). God was their healer. He provided for them when they needed food by sending them manna from heaven. He blessed them with meat when they cried for it. Each time the water was missing he let water spring up from a rock for them to drink. God had been faithful all the way through but the attitude that the Israelites adopted when they were facing a major challenge was quite sad because they did not approach God with humility and thankfulness. They liked to complain and even though God still gave them what they wanted, He was not happy in doing so. God was not happy about their behavior and He was not happy about the way they approached Him in those bad circumstances. God did not have to do all those things for them but He did it because of His love, mercy and grace. How many times was God determined to destroy them because they were so stiff necked? But thank God for the never ceasing intercessions of Moses for the people of God. Thank God for intercessors who can touch the heart of God.
In this episode that took place in the desert of Zin in Kadesh, we find the children of Israel complaining again about the lack of water. This is the place where Miriam, the sister of Moses and Aaron died and was buried. It was a difficult separation and a sad time for the whole congregation. And as if that was not enough, they had no water to drink for the whole camp, including the cattles. So they forgot about God’s earlier and unfailing provisions in the past and started complaining again. They were in the desert and they called that place “an evil place”. Just because our situation looks bad does not mean that we are in an evil place. The trials that God allows us to go through are a place of testing, where our true character is revealed. What we call evil is actually a place of purging, cleansing, and refining that will help us to gain more strength, faith and confidence in God. We should not curse our trials and give them names because they are God’s working tool to shape us into better Christians, and foremost into the image of Christ.
There is nothing that God cannot do, but our attitude in the midst of the fire will determine the outcome. We don’t want God to bless us with a sad heart, but rather happily. We can come to Him in prayer when we are in need, for He cares for us. The Bible says in Philippians 4:6 “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.” I believe that the keyword of this scripture verse is “thanksgiving”. Being thankful even for the trials that we face is honorable before God and releases the miraculous. It causes God to go ahead and do exceedingly above everything we can ask or think. God is able to turn every situation around for our good if we trust and honor Him with a humble and thankful heart. The Word of God says in Psalm 37:4 “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” And we have this promise from our Savior in Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” God is only concerned about blessing us and He has a way of doing things that can blow our human reasoning. But by faith we can overcome and give Him the glory. This evil place or situation in your life can become a tremendous blessing if you just trust God and obey. mt
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