Exodus 40:36-37 Don’t Move Till God Moves

woman on a path

In all the travels of the Israelites, whenever the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle, they would set out: but if the cloud did not lift, they did not set out–until the day it lifted. Exodus 40:36-37

The majority of people like to be on the move. They do not like sitting completely still and waiting in one spot for very long. In traffic, people will quickly honk their horns or get mad when someone does not move immediately after a light turns green. In the check-out lanes in a grocery store, people will jump to another lane, rather than stand for an extra minute.

For many people they feel if they are not doing something, they are failing or missing out on something great. They want to keep moving.

As the Israelites were traveling in the wilderness, God was leading them by a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. They were to move only when the cloud had lifted from the campsite and began to move. If it did not move, they were to stay in place and keep waiting. During this time, they had learned to wait upon God for their next move.

There are many believers who have developed the attitude of the world, in that they must be continually moving. They often feel that if they are not moving at all, they are failing or missing out on something. In ministry work, many are quick to move forward with something, rather than wait upon God’s perfect timing to move forward.

While it is good to move forward, it is only good if it is in God’s time. There is purpose in stopping for a moment and waiting. God is always in the process of lining everything up to work together for His perfect purpose. Jumping ahead of Him, will not fulfill His purpose.

As you are going through life, there will be times God will guide you into something specific. Be sure to wait for His timing to move forward with it. Do not try to rush His purpose in your life.

Seek God for guidance and keep your eyes on Him for the perfect time to move. God will open the doors at the right time. Do not force the doors open before the right time.

God will guide you through the wilderness into the promised land, if you wait on Him and follow Him.

I pray today that you will see God’s leading in your life; that you will learn how to wait upon God’s perfect timing; that you will not move ahead of God, but walk by His side; and that God will reveal His steps for your life.

Ezekiel 34:31 You Are His Sheep

You are my sheep, the sheep of my pasture, and I am your God, declares the Sovereign LORD. Ezekiel 34:31

In this passage God is upset with the leaders of the temple. They were focused on themselves, rather than the people. He calls them shepherds who are not taking care of their sheep.

Now God calls the people His sheep and that He is their God. He plans to take care of them and meet all of their needs. They are to live with no fear, because He is their good shepherd. This is ultimately seen in Jesus, the Good Shepherd. Jesus provided for His sheep the highest offering one can give, His life.

Going through life, is like walking through a wilderness that one has never been in before. For each person, each step is new and brings with it new challenges.

Walking in the wilderness can bring about things that appear to be dangerous. Things such as briars, poison ivy, and fallen trees. These are the immobile things. Then there are the wild animals and bugs that can cause harm. Some of these things are unseen, until one is right upon them and it is too late. There may also be limited light, because of the tree and bush coverage. This makes it difficult to see the path or things in the way.

As a believer, you can walk with assurance, because God is leading you. He will ensure that you have all that you need, just like a good shepherd takes care of his sheep. If a shepherd’s sheep get harmed or die, it does not do him any good. In the same way, if God’s sheep are harmed, it does Him no good.

God has given His word to be a light to your path. He has given His Son to take away sin, which is the sting of death. God has also given you a mission to do, which provides the nourishment you need. He also provides the peace and rest in the middle of the wilderness you are traveling in.

There will be a day when God calls you home, so that you will no longer have to travel in the wilderness. Until that day, you can trust Him to provide for all of your needs. You are His sheep, His pride and joy.

I pray today that you will know Jesus as your shepherd; that you will trust God’s provision for your life; that you will follow God’s lead in your wilderness; and that you will know God’s peace in your life. 

Luke 4:1-2 Tough Directions

“Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, left the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry.” Luke 4:1-2

Jesus had just been baptized by John the Baptist. He was starting to become known in the area as someone different. God spoke audibly that He was His Son.

Now the Holy Spirit gives Jesus some directions to go into the wilderness. This wilderness was a wild, uncultivated wasteland area. No one else would be there, except maybe thieves trying to hide from the authorities. There would be no food there to eat. No motels to stay at for the night. It would be harsh living.

What would your thoughts be if the Holy Spirit gave you those directions? Most people would think that maybe they heard God wrong. Many would be angry with God for sending them into such a “God forsaken” area. Others might think that God is punishing them for doing something wrong.

Jesus did not think any of these things. He knew that God wanted Him there for a reason. This reason was to make Him, who was perfect, even more perfect. In order to take away your sins and understand the powers of sin, He had to be tempted with it. In order to understand giving orders, He had to take orders.

Even though Jesus was God, He was also man. As a man, He had to go through everything that man goes through.

Today, God may be leading you into a wilderness. Although for you it is probably not a literal wilderness. It is an area of life that you feel all alone. You may feel like God has left you. You may feel like you are being punished, that there is no hope and that everything that could go wrong is going wrong.

If God led you into a wilderness, He will lead you through it and back out of it. He has a purpose for that wilderness in your life. Do not lose hope. Trust God. He is working on making you perfect like Jesus was perfect.

Don’t give up. Be willing to walk the path He has for you.

I pray today that you will allow God’s Holy Spirit to guide you; that you will walk the path God has for you; that you will not lose hope in God’s leading; that you will trust God; and that God will make you more like Jesus.

Matthew 4:1 Being Led

“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.” Matthew 4:1

Although this verse is very short, it says a lot. This verse occurs right before Jesus ministry begins.

The Holy Spirit leads Jesus into the wilderness. Most people have no problems with Him being led, but why would it be in the wilderness? You know Jesus was always led by God to do and say everything He did, but, again, why the wilderness?

The wilderness is a dangerous, lonely location. Jesus is supposed to be bringing great news. How can He bring great news if He is alone in the wilderness?

Before Jesus was to begin His ministry to the world, He had to get alone with God and learn the plan of action. Notice in the next verse He spent 40 days fasting. Jesus got alone with God with no distractions. He learned what God wanted Him to know.

Next trouble occurs when you realize why Jesus was sent into the wilderness: to be tempted by the devil. Jesus was God also and did not know sin or temptation. As a man He had to learn what temptation was and how to overcome it. He never failed at learning this. Jesus never gave into any temptation. Now He knows how to help you get through a temptation.

Some days you may feel like you are completely alone in a wilderness. It may seem like God and all your Christian friends have abandoned you. That is the time to focus in on God. Get alone with God. Use that time to draw closer to Him.

When you are alone in the wilderness it is very easy to give into temptation. No one will see or know what you did because you are alone. Yet, God knows. Get closer to Jesus. Do not allow yourself to fall into temptation.

In the wilderness is also the time to build your spiritual muscles. If everything is going smooth and easy for you it is difficult to know if you have grown stronger in God. Allow this time for a time of growing. Do not complain about God leaving you, He is building you up.

Today I pray for you to have the strength to stay close to God in the wilderness, that God will lead and guide you in and through the wilderness, that you will follow the leading of God, that you will keep your eyes on God, and that you will turn from all temptations.