This Lent I’m
reading attempting to read through the whole Bible with Margaret Feinberg and her daily Bible reading plan. If you have three small kids at home, you might know how impossible it feels to attempt something so crazy. Or maybe you will think it is horribly irresponsible that I have dishes and laundry coming out my ears while I try to sit down and read the Bible. And my husband is out of town. Yes, I’ve had a few days where I’ve hardly made it through a few sentences before one of my children needs me. Let alone finding time for a blog post. Or just about anything else. I’m surprised God is speaking to me at all.
But, God is so faithful to speak no matter how we come to him or how much time we have. And I truly believe that our attempt to press into Him blesses His heart the way it would bless any father for a child to want to sit in his presence and hear His voice.
Today I’m reading Joshua 1-Judges 10 and right out of the gate, God spoke to me in His word. God is so faithful.
Joshua has taken leadership over the nation of Israel and is getting ready to enter the promised land, the land flowing with milk and honey.
And right there, God speaks to me. This land flowing with milk and honey is a place sandwiched between Egypt and Mesopotamia, two huge superpowers of cultural and economic significance and God promises Israel the land of Canaan, this in- between strip of land with no real significance. It is a place of nowhere’s and nobody’s. That is, until God promises it to Israel.
But does it really feel like a land flowing with milk and honey?
They’ve been wandering the wilderness for two generations and this will be the first time they’ve owned land. An incredible promise from God! They get there only to find the land filled with enemies, obstacles and wicked rituals like child sacrifice and prostitution.
NOT the land of a peaceful easy life of no struggles that tastes sweet and acts fulfilling.
The land of milk and honey?
I can certainly relate to how the Israelites must have been feeling. Why can’t God’s promises for me be effortless, free of struggle, tribulation or trials?
I’ve found that when God leads me into an in-between place in life, a place of trial, struggle, waiting, tribulation, testing of faith or a place that doesn’t feel like a big time destination vacation spot, it doesn’t mean I’ve missed the will of God. It’s just that His promised place for me includes producing something in me that makes me more like Him.
God’s eternal plan is always better.
He is faithful and where He is leading me I can trust Him. He has gone before me and fought the battles ahead of me. I might have to walk it out, but He has the victory, no matter what circumstances surround me.
I can trust him.
My family has been in transition for close to a year and this land of in between hasn’t felt that promising at times. We’ve had obstacles, set backs, disappointments, and trials. But through it all God has shown His provision, character, grace, love and faithfulness. He is a good God!
We can find joy and fulfillment in any season if we trust God is in it and we can hope if our hope is in Him.
So here I am, sitting getting ready to move across two states to follow Jesus where He leads us. My life doesn’t always feel like the place He has promised, but He is the God who has promised abundant life and He is producing in me the character of God to fulfill the call of God. And let’s be honest. God doesn’t always just use the victories, mountain tops, sunny skies and smooth seas to do a work in us. He uses the messes, the struggles, the storms, the valleys and the good old everyday issues of life to work out His purpose in our lives.
And that land that was supposed to be milk and honey but turned out to be riddled with obstacles? As I look back over the landscape of my life, I see God’s promise on the sunset, closing a chapter behind me and a new day dawns. He is for me, not against me. He has won this battle. The grass was always green even when it felt like a desert. His promised land for me produced something in me I couldn’t get any other way except walking through it with Him at my side.
If you are in a season of life that doesn’t feel like a “promised land”, that feels more like a battlefield than a promise, take heart. God is faithful. He is completing in you what He began. He is always good, all the time and He is working it out in you and on your behalf.
- Eyes to See (onepassiononedevotion.com)
- How to Do the Impossible for God (Joshua 1) (edevotional.com)
- “Blessed Assurance” (wordforlifesays.com)
- Monday: Feb. 18 (prayerscapes.wordpress.com)
- When the answer comes, don’t run from the giants… (mytotallyother.wordpress.com)
- Lent 1 (Bread alone) (fonsofafool.wordpress.com)