Purposeful Wanderings

file0001119394301This year I decided to make a greater study of the Old Testament. I have found an amazing treasure of knowledge in the pages of this blessed book. It has enhanced all of my other scripture studies as it sheds a greater light on the history and purpose of the prophets we learn from.

As I have studied the story of Moses and the children of Israel I have found a beautiful life application. Let me explain. One Sunday a while back a great and wise friend was speaking on the wanderings of the children of Israel. He spoke of these wanderings as a time the Lord was using to prepare this people for their entrance and subsequent establishment of the Promised Land. I felt that day that my little family was in a ‘wilderness’ process of our lives.

Studying the ‘wilderness’ process of the children of Israel, I noticed that they became frustrated all too often with the process. They knew there was a Promised Land that they were working toward, however they didn’t know how or when they would arrive. They had the prophet, Moses to guide them, yet they had moments of doubt and times when their faith seemed to fail them. They could only see what was before them…a seemingly never-ending wilderness.

What they didn’t see was the Lord preparing their hearts AND the land into which they were to go. They didn’t see Him forging their path, creating within them who they needed to be in order to establish the land He knew they could. Their vision was oft times obscured by “Why Me?”, “What are we doing here?” and “Why can’t we just move on?” …etc. This type of thinking and murmuring does not allow for the Spirit of the Lord to fully guide us and develop us. Yet it is natural when we are wandering.

As I have looked back over the past few years of our lives, I see how the Lord has been doing His best to work with me in my ‘wanderings’. Sadly I have seen when I have asked those same questions. You see we have felt for a long time that our family would move. We have searched for where He would have us go. Each search we felt came up fruitless, because it was not the place. We became frustrated and the desire to move on would grow deeper. It took a lot out of us emotionally, spiritually and physically.

It wasn’t until I let go and allowed Him to work that our frustrations began to be comforted. I began to look for what we needed to do for Him where we were. Who did we need to help? Who did we need to learn from? What blessings did we see each day from His hand? These questions are the ones that opened our eyes and hearts to the purposes of our ‘wanderings’. Looking outside of myself, I was able to see better the love He has for all of us. I was able to see how intimately involved He is in our lives. I was able to see a new side of Jesus Christ as I took my pride and selfishness and laid it at His feet.

The paths that Heavenly Father opens for us are always the best ones. It is so important to remember that He works on all sides of our paths…going before us, bearing us up where we are and standing behind us as we move forward. As He is going before us, He is working on a path for others to travel as well. He is working for the good of all of His children. He is allowing us all to grow. As we place our lives in His hands we have to realize that there are so many other lives in His hands too. It is a beautiful tapestry of love that He weaves with us.

As we are now settling in the place we feel is our Promised Land, we feel and see His great blessings. We see how it was by His hand only that we were able to come to be where we are. We see that this is not an end point, but a new beginning of learning, adventures, lives to touch, people to learn from and growth to be had. We see that there is much work to be done, just as the children of Israel had a lot of work to do when they entered into their blessed land. Our ‘wanderings’ may be done, however we have much more to learn and do. It is a blessing to know He allows our wanderings to create in us who we are meant to be.

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