Dave’s Strange and Unusual World

March 11, 2008

By the Numbers

Filed under: Religion — dangrdave @ 2:28 am

I’m taking a small group men’s class at Milestone and we are currently reading some books, one of which is the One Year Bible. Currently, I’m working my way through Numbers, which is a pretty no-nonsense book. As I was reading tonight, I was particularly drawn to three events that made me think a bit. First, at one point, Moses feels pretty much like the weight of all of the people of Israel is on him; God, in awesome fashion, allows about seventy men to share in Moses’ burden. To me, this helped me to see that God does care when we feel overwhelmed. I think this goes back to the whole idea of community and Christians “doing life together.” I think that God places other Christians in our lives to help shoulder the load, by offering us encouragement and by being there in our disappointments and our joys. The job isn’t a one-way street, though. We also need to be there for others, just as they are there for us. We need to be willing to recognize when our friends are overwhelmed, and we need to step up to the plate and be there for them. I know that I need to continue to surround myself with good Godly friends, because that is really part of God’s plan for a healthy lifestyle. A second thing that really stood out to me was when Aaron and Miriam grumbled against Moses for doing something that didn’t necessarily meet with their approval; they thought they could do just as good of a job leading as Moses was doing. God came down and settled the dispute pretty definitively. God said something to the effect that, while He may speak to many people in dreams, He speaks to Moses face-to-face. I know that I’ve been guilty sometimes of grumbling against authority, but I was reminded that, in all areas of life, but especially in our churches, our job is to ensure that we are right with God before we go grumbling about our leadership. It’s sort of like the old “check the plank in your own eye” idea. Sure, our leaders need to be Godly and open, and they definitely need to be of excellent character; however, God put those individuals in their positions for a purpose…and, I’m pretty sure that He knows better than we do about these sort of things. As long as we watch ourselves, God will take care of the faults of others. And if there is someone in leadership who is in the wrong, God will bring that to light and will deal with that situation in a much more effective way than we ever could by stirring up dissension. The third point of interest that caught my attention was the story wherein the twelve spies returned from the promised land. This story probably gets the most attention in Numbers, but it really makes me wonder how much I do trust in God to do what He says He can. Instead of relying on God, despite the facts, ten of the spies gave a negative report and basically ended up dying of a disease pretty darn quick. The people, because they believed the ten over the two, were told that they would all die in the wilderness. The children would have to suffer by walking around in circles for forty years, waiting for their parents to die, before they could go in and take the land. I think that I personally need to do a much better job of trusting God to do what He says He will, because I believe that my doubts and my trepidations about God’s plan can have consequences for me and for my children (sorry, none on the way as of yet!). Now, thankfully, there is an abundance of grace out there, but trust is still a very important aspect in any Christian’s life. I’ve done a lot of things my own way, and they don’t always turn out the best; I’ve done a lot of things God’s way, and I am always amazed. I am really enjoying the book of Numbers, so I hope to add any other interesting nuggets of wisdom that stand out, as I find them; however, as I mentioned, it is a One Year Bible, so I have plenty of time (approximately 8 months and 20 days).

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