Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Blogging A to Z Challenge "Whiney Israelites"

Whiney Israelites

God had gotten His people out of slavery in Egypt. He showed His power against Pharaoh through the plagues that, after a few, only affected the Egyptians, leaving the Israelites untouched. (You can read the narratives of the examples below in the book of Exodus, chapters 1-17.)

God led the Israelites with a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night.

He parted the Red Sea so the Israelites could escape again from the Egyptians. When the Egyptians followed them, the water closed over and killed them.

He made the bitter, undrinkable water sweet at Marah.

He sent manna from heaven, providing food for years.

He made water come from a rock.

The Israelites’ clothing did not wear out for 40 years.

Over and over again, time after time after time, the Lord showed His power and His love for His people, the Israelites, through guidance, miracles, and providing for them.

And over and over and over, they whine, complain, and grumble.

“We would be better off back in Egypt!”

“Why did you bring us here?”

“We’re tired of manna!”

“We’re thirsty!”

I see this pattern of ungratefulness in the Israelites and shake my head at them. How could they be so blind to God’s love for them?

But then…I remember my own gripes and whining.

“But Lord, I waaaannnnnttttt it! Why can’t I haaavveee it?”

“I’m so tired of dealing with this situation!”

“Why can’t my life be easier?”

(Many times I picture God rolling His eyes and shaking His head at me…”I’ve provided for her soooo many times, and she STILL doubts?”)

And then…I remember the words of Matthew 7:3, in which Jesus says, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”

It’s easy for me to see (and criticize) the speck in the eyes of the Israelites, and ignore the plank in my own eye. It is so easy for me to forget the countless answered prayers, the endless blessings, the ways God has so clearly shown that He is with me and loves me.

And I have so much more than the Israelites! I have the Bible at my fingertips and can read reassuring verses every day. I have study Bibles and aids to help me understand.

And instead of a hope of a Savior in the future, I have the narrative of Jesus’ birth, life, death, and resurrection right in front of me, available to me every single day.

Lord, You have given me so very much, and I have so much more than the Israelites. Please forgive my whining!   
I'm also blogging at Home is Where the Mom Is  
Today my entry is titled "Independent; Raising Your Kids to Be."