September 23, 2020

Brothers and Sisters, Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible which we call the Pentateuch.  In the fifth book, Deuteronomy, Moses gives a speech to the children of Israel in the first chapter.  (Deuteronomy 1:3-8)  And it came to pass in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, that Moses spake unto the children of Israel, according unto all that the LORD had given him in commandment unto them;  After he had slain Sihon the king of the Amorites, which dwelt in Heshbon, and Og the king of Bashan, which dwelt at Astaroth in Edrei: On this side Jordan, in the land of Moab, began Moses to declare this law, saying, The LORD our God spake unto us in Horeb, saying, Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount: Turn you, and take your journey, and go to the mount of the Amorites, and unto all the places nigh thereunto, in the plain, in the hills, and in the vale, and in the south, and by the sea side, to the land of the Canaanites, and unto Lebanon, unto the great river, the river Euphrates.  Behold, I have set the land before you: go in and possess the land which the LORD sware unto your fathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to give unto them and to their seed after them. Moses is reminding the children of Israel that God had set before them the land that He had promised to their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  The land was theirs and all they had to do was go in and possess it, but as you know they sent in spies first and when they saw the size of the people as compared to themselves, they were afraid and refused to go in and take the land.  As a result, they spent 40 years wandering around in the wilderness. Because we’re human, we all experience feelings of inadequacy from time to time.  We feel as though we’re insufficient for the task set before us.  The Israelites felt inadequate as they stood on the edge of the Promised Land.  They felt weak as compared to the strength of the inhabitants of that land, so they refused to conquer the land.  How tragic it was that they never saw the land God had promised to give them.  That generation of people died wandering around in the wilderness and 40 years later, Joshua led an entirely different generation of Israelites into the Promised Land. How many times have we been found guilty of running away from the obstacles and challenges we are forced to face in life?  Instead of facing them, we find it easier to just turn and walk away.  How many blessings have we let slip right through our hands simply because we were too afraid to face something that looked much bigger than we could handle? God has a perfect will for each of our lives, but in order for us to find what that perfect will is for our life we must face some obstacles along the way.  We shouldn’t allow anything to come between us and God’s will for our life because if you miss God’s will, you have missed the best of everything.  God constantly has our best interest at heart.  I love this verse of scripture.  (Jeremiah 29:11)  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. Like the children of Israel, we become fearful.  As the obstacle grows in our mind, we run from the challenge.  However, turning away from God’s plan for our life will only lead us into bondage and we will miss out on the very best that God has in store for us. The children of Israel should have trusted in God to defeat their enemies, but they only saw their enemies as giants and themselves as grasshoppers.  They forgot how big their God was.  When we face our challenges in life, instead of looking at the size of the problem, let’s remember that we have a God that is looking out after us and is working in our life to give us an expected end. 
Bro. Rick

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