2/19/2013 11:40:46 AM
The Land Between
By: Jeff Manion
Using the Biblical story of the Exodus from Egypt to the Promised Land Manion shows how God uses the challenges of travelling through our wildernesses in life to help us grow in faith.
It is not only important that we recognize the hard times in our life but how we respond to those difficult challenges. God uses these difficult times to ask the question, Will you trust me? It is during these times that the challenges and trials shape who we become.
What happens in our past helps us determine how we respond in the present. Even when we can’t control what is happening to us we can control how we respond to those challenges.
During the journey through the wilderness the people continued to complain even though God was meeting their needs and responding to their desires. It never seemed to take long for them to only be able to see the negative and become angry with the leadership, Moses, and with God. They continued to want to look back to Egypt where they knew what to expect.
They had to learn to trust God during their time of wandering so that they were better prepared for the blessings that God had in store for them. it was during this time that they were taught disciplines that would help them not only during the journey but that they would be able to pass down to those that came after them on how to follow God’s ways.
There is a great section on raising children and how often it seems like a journey through an unknown wilderness. We are not raising children, we are raising those that will become adults that need to have learned to be responsible for the decisions they make.
We have to remember that God was teaching this people that they were to be different when they entered the Promised Land from those around them. We as Christians are called to be different and to not only know God’s ways of living but to live them out in the midst of the people around us. They, like us, were chosen to reflect who God was to the world.
When we are challenged in life we have the opportunity to allow God to teach us how to respond and that begins with trusting God to transform us into who He wants us to be. The land between is fertile ground for us to develop that transforming faith. While we wouldn’t choose many of the transitions we go through in life, it is during those times that God transforms us into His image so that we more nearly reflect Him to the world around us. He is always working to mold and shape us to be more like Him.
This space between often takes time to travel and it is also a place where our faith in God will be challenged. It is in places that we would not choose that God often brings us the greatest blessings. We have to be very aware that we can be just like those that chose to harden their hearts in the wilderness and missed out on God’s blessing and the transformation that God had in store for them.
It is in those wilderness journeys that God is giving us an opportunity to trust Him and allow him to mold us. Remember it is in those places that we least want to go that God teaches us the things that bear the very fruit we desire.
If you are facing one of those times in your life when you think you have entered the bareness of the wilderness of life, or if you want to be better prepared for the time you are asked to enter that place then I think you will not only be challenged but inspired to trust God in those places.