Fathering in the desert

Numbers 14:3,7b-8

“Why is the LORD bringing us into this land, to fall by the sword? Our wives and our little ones will become plunder; would it not be better for us to return to Egypt?”

[Then Joshua and Caleb spoke]

The land which we passed through to spy out is an exceedingly good land. “If the LORD is pleased with us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us—a land which flows with milk and honey.

The Hebrew people had been called out of living in captivity in a foreign land to go out to a new place that God had ready for them. But the journey required that they would trust in God.

When we do new or different things we can have to move out of our comfort zones or there can sometimes be difficult times of learning when you stretch yourself. Sometimes when we look at life’s problems and the obstacles that stand in our way it can look like we should return to the place where things were easy, we didn’t have to push through the roughness of the desert.

Whether they would inherit the land would come down to this one thing Joshua said,

“If the LORD is pleased with us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us”

Because the hebrew people had seen God do many great and miraculous things, believing God to be strong was not a problem for them. Later they would construct metal idols representing strength. It showed that they were happy in their hearts to believe in a strong yet stoic god, without personality and so being without emotions.

If they were to inherit the promised land, they would need to come to a place of understanding that God was with them and he would fulfil his promises not only because of his great strength and ability to do it, but the reason he would do it was ultimately because of his great pleasure towards them. They needed to learn in the traveling and stretching time that God was not going to give up on them.

It had been difficult for them to open their hearts to receive this, but without this understanding, they would not enter into their inheritance.

God desired to show himself in the roughness of the desert as a Father wanting to lead them through.

Jeremiah 3:1
“I myself said, “‘How gladly would I treat you like sons and give you a desirable land, the most beautiful inheritance of any nation.’ I thought you would call me ‘Father’ and not turn away from following me.

Deuteronomy 1:31
and in the desert. There you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place.”

When you have to put the effort in and things seem difficult or impossible (like facing giants), It is so often easy to grumble, complain and sometimes just give up altogether. It’s during these testings and times of growing in our life that we need to persevere and show endurance, listening to the Father’s voice and to believe that as our Father He works for our good.

leaving egypt

“You’ve been too long upon this mountain
Its time you journey to the sea
Sometimes to trust in your false comfort
Is easier than trusting me
Some men only believe in what their eyes can see
Some men only believe in what their minds conceive

But believing’s like conceiving
This child that we’re receiving
A gift beyond our reason
Its more of what we need, and less of what we know
It calls not to our mind, but cries out to our soul

That mountain’s burning in the sky
To the heart of heaven
Without the fire we’ll never fly
To the heart of heaven
Can you hear God’s holy cry
From the heart of heaven
Lay it all down
Lay it all down
Lay it all down
For the heart of heaven “