We often wonder how the Israelites, who walked closely with God in the wilderness, saw all His miracles, ate of nnected with the God who loves me too much to let me stay away from Him. ck into ministry, but above all, I’em, I need fiHis manna and had all their daily needs provided, could turn cold once in the land of plenty.
The other day I watched ‘The Appointed Times: Jesus in the Feasts of Israel‘ with Michael Brown, Avner Boskey and Michael Rydelnik. It is a video about the feasts of the Lord, but as I watched, something jumped out at me. Helen Frenkley, former Director of Biblical Landscape Reserve, described what the land of Israel was like. She pointed out that Israel’s only source of water is rainfall, and that it only rains from November to March – at best. All the water needs of the country – for the entire year – are dependent on the rainfall of just these few months.
This is the land that God said flowed with milk and honey. Yet it is completely dependent on rain fall. No rain, no crops. No rain, no drinking water. So God blessed the people of Israel with a land that caused them to stay close to Him for their sustenance – just like in the dessert, but with more freedom to conduct their daily lives.
This got me to thinking about my own life. For several years I was a field merchandiser working part-time for several companies. Every morning I spent a lot of time with my heavenly Father. We talked about life, about my needs, about what He wanted me to accomplish for that day. He always provided lots of jobs and I never went without.
Then I got a position as a salaried manager. And each day saw a decline in the time I spent with my Dad and more time I invested in my job. And then I stepped away from ministry, and eventually even my family took a backseat to the call of my career.
About a year ago I got a wake-up call. I had done very well with the company and was promoted to upper management. But as I said – God, family, friends and ministry all took a backseat to the job. After the promotion, I spent 15 months doing nothing but work. I stopped going to church, stopped talking to people, didn’t even call my mother to say hello. The only people I spoke to or seemed to care about were my fellow employees. My conversation, once full of stories of God’s miracles, was now peppered with expletives and centered on nothing but work.
Then the axe fell.
The company, that lauded my originality and enthusiasm, was no longer happy with my performance and demoted me. After all that investment of time and energy, one quick decision wiped away 15 months of my life. It was then that I realized work is nothing but shifting sand. It is the Lord that matters.
And that’s when I realized how easy it is to be like the Israelites, and before I stand in judgment of them – or wonder how they could so easily turn away from God – I need to first take a look at my own life.
I am still in management, but have put the job back in its proper place. I returned to fellowship with believers, reconnected with my family and friends, and am back in ministry. But above all, I’ve reconnected with the God who loves me too much to abandon me to my own folly.