During the course of my reading this week I came across this statement, “The ability to precisely define reality is the starting point for any hope of equilibrium.” They are simple words in one sense but very profound at the same time. I believe one of the greatest challenges in a believer’s personal journey is the ability to see and be honest with himself about his own condition.
Think about the Nation of Israel as they left Egypt and journeyed through the wilderness. It had only been three months since their leaving Egypt. They had watched as God rescued them from Pharaoh. At the hand of Moses, they had been given from their captor wealth, freedom, and now they are guided by God Himself through the pillar of fire and cloud. They have experienced starvation and bread from heaven. They were literally thirsting to death and had their thirst quenched from a rock. If there ever were a people who understood what it is to be discombobulated, it was Israel.
Sometimes as children of God, we allow the distortion of this life to mess up our equilibrium– spiritual vertigo if you will. However, in reality and from what we see in Scripture, God was and is right there all the time!
There are a tremendous amount of life lessons we can learn from the Nation of Israel during their wilderness journeys. For example, often times we confuse God’s presence with plenty. God’s presence in our lives doesn’t equal material possession. The Israelites were moving just as God instructed; they were led by the pillar of fire by night and a cloud by day.
Can we be honest for a moment? I don’t like that! They were doing what God asked; they were following instructions, and yet God still led them to a place that didn’t have water. Be honest with me; how many of you have ever felt, or currently are feeling, that you’re doing everything your supposed to do, you’re following God, you’re really putting your best foot forward, and God leads you to this dry and desolate place?
Listen, that’s a view from the trenches, that’s our perspective. Let me give you a view from the throne; “Dear children, if you’ll just go where I lead you, there is not a place I will lead you that I will not sustain you!
In every aspect of life, there is perplexity attached to it— perplexity that takes us to our limits and draws us near to God. It is in the midst of the struggles of this life that we learn that this world does not hold any finite answers. And it is in that unrest and dissatisfaction that we are forced to look beyond the limits of this earth to an unlimited God!