Showing posts from June, 2019

"THE WAY" - Day 12 verses 1 & 2

All the Israelite men and women who were willing brought to the Lord freewill offerings for all the work the Lord through Moses had commanded them to do. Exodus 35:29 NIV The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” Genesis 2:18 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 12

We’re All In This Together This probably seems like an odd verse in the middle of a study about life’s journey, but this section of Israel’s story marks a significant transition. Up until this point, when they began to build the Tabernacle, they had been grumbling and complaining and fighting amongst themselves and with God and Moses (positive bunch!).  From this point on though, when they started working, and working together, the grumbling disappears. Now that’s a miracle!  There are several gems to take from this (like the fact that we’re all better humans when we’re involved in a purpose bigger than ourselves!) but the one we’ll focus on is that we’re actually meant to do this journey together, in partnership. Not isolation or competition, but with each other. We work best when we work together and we walk best when we walk together.  The only “not good” in all of the creation story was that man was alone—enter woman! So let’s decide to not do this journey alone. We’re bet

"THE WAY" - Day 11 verses 1 & 2

“Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her. Hosea 2:14 NIV Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Matthew 4:1 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 11

Whispers In The Wilderness We can thank the Israelites’ 40 years of wandering for the bad rap that the wilderness gets in the minds of many Christians. But the wilderness is actually a place of great beauty.  In Scripture it is a place of amazing revelation. In fact, the Hebrew word for wilderness (Midbar) is from the words  “from”  (as in place) “ the word. ” So it’s fair to say that the wilderness is the Place of The Word or Wordplace.  This makes so much sense when, in the seeming silence of the desert, God’s word is so clear to Moses, Israel, Elijah, even Jesus. Even a whisper in the wilderness is crystal clear. So if you find yourself in a desert season, don’t be discouraged. God took Israel to the desert to speak tenderly to her there. The Holy Spirit even led Jesus into the wilderness, where the Word was tested and He answered,  “it is written” in the "Wordplace."   Let your desert season be a time to listen for his still small voice and to cling to his word

"THE. WAY" - Day 10 verse

Each morning everyone gathered as much as they needed, and when the sun grew hot, it melted away. Exodus 16:21 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 10

We Eat Miracles For Breakfast One of the amazing things about the miracle of the manna the Israelites received along the way was that it was there daily. And yet they got familiar with it, even bored of it!  I wonder what daily, seemingly mundane things in our lives are actually God’s provision for us? There are miracles in the mundane.  So many miracles in Scripture were found in the daily, ordinary things: breakfast, fishing, jars, oil, water, washing—just ordinary things with a little extra. Extra-ordinary.  The same could be true in our lives. Rather than looking for the spectacular, perhaps many of the miracles—the signs and wonders—are found in the simple things. What simple, ordinary things have we become familiar with that, with a fresh perspective, could fill us with wonder? 

"THE WAY" - Day 9 verse

“Go,” Jesus replied, “your son will live.” The man took Jesus at his word and departed. While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “Yesterday, at one in the afternoon, the fever left him.”  Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and his whole household believed. John 4:50‭-‬53 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 9

Miracles Are On The Way This story in John is one of many examples in the Bible where the miracle someone needs happens on the way. This is important because we can be fooled into thinking that we can’t do anything until God turns up, but God is already with us and our miracle is often on the way, so we just need to keep walking.  Just like the man in this story, the Israelites saw the Red Sea open as they moved, manna from heaven as they wandered, the Jordan River open as they stepped in. Miracles happen along the way, when we’re in motion, acting on what God has said.  If God wants us to walk with him, then we need to walk and he’ll provide what we need along the way. And if God has promised a miracle, we can walk with the Word and see it happen on the way. What is something miraculous that you need that the Bible promises, that you can choose to believe to see happen along the way? 

"THE WAY" - Day 8 verses 1 & 2

When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” Exodus 13:17 NIV Little by little I will drive them out before you, until you have increased enough to take possession of the land. Exodus 23:30 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 8

There Are No Shortcuts It’s tempting on any journey to look for shortcuts along the way, but the problem with shortcuts is they’re often not as helpful as we’d hoped.  It seems good in the moment to skip certain obstacles or hurry through certain parts of the journey, but if we could see the path from God’s perspective, perhaps we’d understand the importance of those “inconveniences.”  There are lessons on the way. Israel needed to be ready to conquer the Promised Land and as a ragged bunch of runaways they were in no condition to win any battles early in their journey. Similarly, God drove their enemies out “little by little”(Exodus 23:30) once they got into Canaan, so they could grow into their calling.  He has the promise ready for us, but he also wants us ready for the promise. It seems he’s not in a rush, and neither ought we be.  Time on the way is a gift.  Are there any experiences or obstacles in your life that you’ve been trying to shortcut that could be helping y

"THE WAY" - Day 7 verses 1 & 2

Then say to him, ‘The Lord , the God of the Hebrews, has sent me to say to you: Let my people go, so that they may worship me in the wilderness. But until now you have not listened. Exodus 7:16 NIV It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 7

The Long Walk To Freedom There’s an important little conjunction in those verses that point to an important process:  “so that.”  “Let my people go, so that they may worship me...”  Our freedom is for a purpose!  There are two key words for freedom in the Old Testament. One meaning  free from captivity, oppression, etc  and one meaning  free to/for something or someone.  This implies that walking in true freedom comes in two phases. God didn’t just want Israel free from Egypt, he wanted them free for himself—free to worship.  He didn’t want them stuck avoiding the past but able to fully embrace the future. This is a process. We don’t just walk out of prison, we need to learn also to walk in freedom and this walk might take some time—40 years even!  How great that God wants us to walk with him as we are and along the way we become more and more free. “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.”  (Galatians 5:1) What things would you like God to free you from? And wh

"THE WAY" - Day 6 verse

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground. Exodus 14:15‭-‬16 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 6

Move On! Just like at times we need to be still, there are also times when we need to move on! It is almost amusing in these verses how God says to Moses, "Why are you crying to me? Tell them to move on!" God had given Moses (and Israel) all they needed (the staff and His promise of deliverance) and now he wanted them to act!  Sometimes we need God to fight on our behalf but there are other times when he knows we have it in us to breakthrough ourselves. It’s what any great parent or coach would do. Rather than step in and rescue every time, allow people to rise and discover that they can do it, even when it looks impossible.  On the way, God was discipling his children and teaching them to trust him and what he had put within them. Are there areas in your life that you just want God to “fix” but he has potentially already empowered you to move on through? 

"THE WAY" - Day 5 verse

Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:13‭-‬14 NIV

"THE WAY" - Day 5

Be Still There are times along the way when things get more than a little stressful, overwhelming, challenging, even terrifying. Sometimes this is a result of us getting in our own way, but other times it’s because we live in a fallen world and crazy stuff happens.  These are the moments in which we want to control all the variables and outcomes, or see much further down the way than we’re currently able. But like the Israelites, when we’re in what seems like a hopeless situation—an impasse—we need to learn to be still and trust, or like the Psalmist says (Psalm 46:10), “Be still and know,” that God is with you, ahead of you and right behind you. He has your back, so you can rest. All we need to do is be still on the inside and we will be able to stand firm on the outside. Is there a situation you’re facing at the moment that seems as though there’s no way through? Try talking to the Lord about it and allow him to still your heart. 

"THE WAY" - Day 4 verss

And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night:  He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people. Exodus 13:21‭-‬22 KJV

"THE WAY" - Day 4

Follow Me Jesus called to His disciples, “Follow me” and while it sounds like a weird way to greet someone, it’s actually really helpful if you don’t know where you’re going.  Similarly, in this story with the Israelites, God promises to go before them on the way and they need only follow Him. It’s really only when we think we know better, or we don’t trust the person leading, that we’re hesitant to follow. It takes humility and trust to follow someone. But if that Someone never takes a wrong turn, always waits for us, gives us everything we need for the journey and even carries us when we can’t do it, why would we not follow him?  He doesn’t just know the way , he is the Way.  What part of your week could look different if you waited and looked for God’s leading and followed him? 

"THE WAY" - Day 3 verse

Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb.  And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. Exodus 3:1‭-‬2 KJV

"THE WAY" - Day 3

He Started It The thing I love about the burning bush story is that God initiated the encounter with a guy who was basically on the run and hiding from him. We can sometimes think we need God to write it in the sky for us to know it’s really him. The good news is that, in his grace, if he sees that it is needed, he will write it in the sky, part a sea, or make a bush burn to get our attention.  Other times there’ll be just a still small voice, but this journey, this mission, The Way he wants us on, he doesn’t hide it from us or leave it to us to find. Heaven came down. He started it. In what ways has God been faithful in showing you The Way? 

"THE WAY" - Day 2 verse 1 & 2

And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows;  And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites. Exodus 3:7‭-‬8 KJV Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his Lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. John 15:15 KJV

"THE WAY" - Day 2

Walk This Way Walking with God is a choice  we  get to make. He won’t force us, coerce us, or make us follow him. He doesn’t want us as slaves, he want us as friends (John 15:15). He wants free people, choosing freely to walk with him.  In the story of the Israelites, God saw their suffering in slavery and wanted them free. He stepped into his story and delivered them so they could worship him freely. He took the shackles off their feet so they could walk (or dance!) with him, freely.  And walk they did! For 40 years God was trying to teach them how to walk as free people, rather than slaves. It took one night to get the Israelites out of Egypt and 40 years to get Egypt out of the Israelites!  It seems odd, but it’s true of all of us. How easily we stumble around and trip up on things that we need not be entangled with or held back by. Jesus has freedom for us. We just need to choose daily to walk this way. What is one thing you’ve been “tripping over” that you could ask God

"THE WAY" - verse 1 & 2

Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. John 14:6 KJV And he saith unto them, Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men. Matthew 4:19 KJV

"THE WAY" - 14 Day reading plan

The Way The earliest disciples were called followers of The Way, which is important because Christianity was never meant to be just another religion, but a  Way . It’s both a journey and the path you walk on. It’s not static but in constant motion; it’s not just one choice but a lifetime of choices.  We’ve not reached our destination, our best life, our God-given potential, but we are always on the way and we are called to make a way for others to join us. We are called to follow not formulate—follow the way of the One who is The Way, The Truth, and The Life.  In Matt 4:19 Jesus said “Come follow me,” to his first disciples, and he says the same to us today. It’s a walk with him and we’re all just on the way. It’s not always easy but it’s always that simple. In what ways may you have overcomplicated what following Jesus looks like?