The Bible is just FULL of easy targets. You know what I mean, right??
Individuals that cause you to wrinkle up your brow in confusion. Groups that you can snicker at while thinking what idiots they were in thier responses. Situations that leave you with a satisfied smile as you realize how much better you would have handled it.
My study yesterday led me to a section of Exodus where we find the Israelite camp complaining...again.
Forget the fact that God had just marched them out of slavery with a free pass from the one who could have ordered their extinction...
Forget the fact that He had just reached down to split open the Red Sea to grant them entry onto dry land, all while setting up the perfect watery grave for the man who regretted letting them go alive...
Let's even forget the fact He had been travelling with them visably as a pillar of fire and a sun-ray blocking cloud...or that He had caused bitter water to run sweet by adding a piece of wood.
So, in forgetting all that, we open up on this wandering nation a couple of months into their freedom from Egypt. Their voices are raised against Moses and Aaron because they are hungry. They are so hungry that they actually raise their voices to say "If only we had died by the Lord's hand in Egypt...but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death."
Pretty crazy, right? I mean, God just saved them from continuing on for another 400 years in slavery at the hand of a killer and here they are saying "I wish you would've just killed us instead of doing this!" I can promise you that if I were Him, I would have just pointed my finger and zapped their collective bottoms...
...but instead He showed mercy.
...but instead He fed them with food from heaven, enough for each day.
...but instead He gave those of us who would follow after them a picture of what it means to live for God.
I can point and laugh at the Israelites for how many times they lifted their fists and anger towards the One who loved them so much that He kept sparing thier lives...but when I finish laughing and I look in a mirror, I can see myself ~ hands raised and anger pouring from my lips...
...because this isn't what I meant by "save me", Lord.
...because when I asked You for help, I thought You were gonna change them.
...because when I surrendered my life to You, I fully believed I was still gonna have a say so in my life lessons.
Yesterday, as I read thru this section of verses, I found myself focusing on the food that He sprinkled down into their mornings on the dew of a new day. Small blessings, meant to be searched for and collected to get them thru another day...sweet flakes that rotted when held onto for too long because He meant for them to look for Him afresh when the sun broke thru yet another night.
As they came out of their tents to see the ground snowed over in white, they asked Moses "What is it?" Moses (who I am sure was equally as blessed as he was exhausted herding these fickle people) simply took a deep breath and said "It is the bread the Lord has given you to eat...each one is to gather as much as he needs." It was the response to their pleas...tiny little flakes, yet enough to feed the million people who woke to just "another grumbling day" in the desert.
So that "Then you will know that I am the Lord your God."
*verses taken from Exodus 16, NIV*
Praying your personal "Manna feast" fills your soul while looking up as always...