Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Desperate for relief...
Summer has finally arrived and I am LOVING being warm! The flowers are blooming, the skies are blue, and the days are long. Hmmmm...how nice to know that when the gray clouds and rain wears long, summer is always just around the corner.
As I enjoy the beauty of God's creation and relish His goodness to me, I keep thinking about why there are times we choose NOT to worship Him above all things. When we choose other "gods" so to speak- finding comfort and happiness in friends, boyfriends, husbands, children, food, recreational activities, whatever. We know that we are choosing a quick, momentary relief or joy- yet we do it anyways. Why?
Still hanging out in the Old Testament, I was thinking about the Israelites when they first leave Egypt. They were so overjoyed to be free- away from slavery and the misery their earthly masters tormented them with. Yet God brought them out of Egypt into the... Desert. Nothing but arid, dry dust. Their joy at freedom lasted about a chapter before they started to whine about their sufferings again. I so get that. Unfortunately. God blesses my socks off, and then I ask for more. Bah.
Anyways...if you remember the story (and if you don't go check it out in Exodus...SO GOOD.), you know that because of the Israelites stinky attitude, God made them wander 40 years in the desert, never allowing the adults who left Egypt as slaves to see the Promised Land but instead giving the Land to their children once all the whiners had kicked the bucket. But I wonder...what would their lives have been like had they trusted God? Instead of living the rest of their lives free but frying hot wandering the desert, they might have been able to live out the Promise- fertile land, overlooking fields abundant with food, grandbabies on their knees and joyfully worshiping their Awesome Savior. How wonderfully different would their lives have been had they chosen to believe God at His Word and see His mercy in the midst of the desert?
Psalm 106 recaps it so much better than I can. Here's a little taste- but I pray that you turn to it today and read the Psalm in it's entirety. What a story...
"Then they believed his promises and sang his praise. But they soon forgot what he had done and did not wait for his counsel. In the desert they gave in to their craving; in the wasteland they put God to the test." Psalm 106:12-14
Did you catch it? As subtle as I am- I bolded it for you. :) They "forgot" all the Lord had done, and they "did not wait" for God's plan but instead gave into their cravings. I realized that more often than not when I am most susceptible to following after "false idols" is when I am struggling in the desert, not when I am on the mountain highs of my life. When I am most desperate for comfort, relief, and relaxation, when I crave instant gratification- that's when I give into the world's definition of "good" and "happiness". I eat the whole chocolate cake, I wallow in shallow romance, I put more stock in my pride and my ability than I do in the beautiful "Promised Land" of God's provision and grace. Oh, how He loves me anyways...and I hate it when I trade that glorious love for something that is immediate but finite.
I hope today you talk with the Infinite, Wonderous God of All, and let Him provide you with the true "relief" you are desperately needing. The relief that can never be taken away and will never run out. Don't look at your desert right now, sister. Look at the Promised Land that is just over the hill...and trust Jesus to get you there.