Friday, February 7, 2014

Numbers 1-3

We begin the the book of Numbers (1-3) in the Old Testament today.  It was written by Moses.  

The Israelites have been on a journey with God for a year and two months at this point.  God has brought them out of slavery in Egypt, made His dwelling among them, and He is guiding them to the Promised Land in Canaan, about 200 miles away.  God decides it's time to take a census of all the Israelites, and He tells Moses exactly how to do it.    

Let me just tell you, I am not a numbers girl.  My brain just doesn't work that way.  So, the first time I began reading this book in the Bible, I thought "Oh brother.  I'm going to struggle through this one."  And I'm not going to lie, I did at first.  Thank goodness for God's light on the situation.

As I read through the entire census process, going through the twelve tribes of Israel, I started thinking about how God pours His love into families across generations and how amazing that is.  These numbers are part of a much bigger story.

God started this whole love story with Adam and Eve, then Noah, and then He filled Abraham's heart with His promises.  We see a story of faith that evolves over time, both for individuals and the entire Israelite community.  It's so complicated, even dramatic, and yet God's love is pure and simple.  Because He is faithful, we can learn to be faithful.

And look what happens...

The numbers in my reading today are meaningful to say the least.

32 These are the Israelites, counted according to their families. All the men in the camps, by their divisions, number 603,550. 33 The Levites, however, were not counted along with the other Israelites, as the Lord commanded Moses.

34 So the Israelites did everything the Lord commanded Moses; that is the way they encamped under their standards, and that is the way they set out, each of them with their clan and family.

One is the start of much in God's story.   

We are getting a picture of how God works.  He is able to establish His promises by revealing His purpose, one relationship at a time.  Whether it's Adam, Eve, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, you, or me, the power of God's love is contagious, and it grows exponentially through faith.  

The point is, God needs you.  He needs me.  Our faith matters.  Each one of us are part of something huge, and it all goes back to our personal relationship with our Savior.

A prayer for today-

Dear God,

Thank You for making me a part of Your story of love and faith.  I pray my relationship with You will grow stronger and stronger each day.  Lord, help my family stand united across generations in love and knowledge of You.  Guide each of us in following You through all that we do and forgive our misguided steps.  Bless us with humble and thankful hearts open to Your word.  Use us for Your glory and bigger story.

I also pray for all the families on my mind today,________________.  Be with them and wrap them in your healing, comforting arms.

In the name of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirt,

Grace and peace,

*This post is part of A Mind-Maker-Upper's Everyday Reading Project.  Click here to read more. 

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