Friday, February 05, 2010

Remaining faithful still the standard

Good morning. Today’s scripture comes from Exodus 15:25b-26 (New Living Translation): It was there at Marah that the Lord set before them the following decree as a standard to test their faithfulness to him. He said, “If you will listen carefully to the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in his sight, obeying his commands and keeping all his decrees, then I will not make you suffer any of the diseases I sent on the Egyptians; for I am the Lord who heals you.”

Sometimes, God’s commands see difficult to comprehend, or we aren’t sure of the direction God is leading us. Yet, at other times, God’s decrees are incredibly simple and basic. The message Moses relayed to the Israelites was as easy as it gets: Listen carefully to God’s voice, and obey his commands. That’s it.

If we always accomplished that objective, we wouldn’t be facing the troubles we face day after day. Many people would argue that it’s hard to distinguish God’s voice at times, and that it isn’t always black and white when it comes to doing the right thing. Imagine how the Israelites felt; Moses hadn’t yet brought down the 10 Commandments from his mountaintop experience. Just what were his decrees?

Ah, but we cannot make the same complaint the Israelites made. We have the wisdom of the Bible to fall back on. We know what the 10 Commandments say, and we know that Jesus whittled that down even more, to two basic rules: Love God first with all your heart, mind and soul, then love your neighbor as yourself. That’s still the standard of faithfulness that God gives us.

The next day, God would rain down quail and bread for the people to let them know that he is the God who provides. Some still complained, or they didn’t trust that the food would come every day, so they hoarded away extra food. That’s what we do; we don’t really trust God to meet our needs, so we take matters into our own hands. We keep watching God tap a rock and watching water flow out of it, then a few days later, we forget, whine some more and wail some more, then we ask for another miracle. Instead, when trials come along, we should take a deep breath and remember the manna that God always provides in our lives. God is always there for us; we just have to remain faithful.

How does this apply to my life?

Today’s prayer: Lord, I admit that sometimes I struggle to hear your voice. Help me to be faithful and to remember your provision in difficult times. Help me to remember that you are the God who provides. Amen

This week’s reading plan can be found at http:/

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