Numbers 14:27, 29 “How long must I put up with this wicked community and its complaints about me? Yes, I have heard the complaints the Israelites are making against me. You will all drop dead in this wilderness! Because you complained against me, every one of you who is twenty years old or older and was included in the registration will die.”
The wilderness wandering was a major event in the Bible. It is mentioned many times throughout Scripture in both the Old and New Testaments. Sometimes I believe we fail to see the significance as if this happened to the Israelites and has no application in our lives. However, the reason for their punishment for their rebellious attitude that led to sin is one of the reasons believers are wandering in a spiritual wilderness today.
Even though we are believers, we can still have an attitude problem. We complain about the very blessings God has given us instead of expressing our gratitude. We covet what God has given others rather than being content with what He has provided for us. We criticize others when God has commanded us to love them. We doubt God’s character when we should be exercising faith. We rebel when we should submit. And, if we don’t change before it’s too late, our attitude will keep us in a dry, parched, dusty spiritual desert unable to enter the promised land flowing with milk and honey.
“Those who choose murmuring as their lifestyle will spend their lifetimes in the wilderness!”¹
For the past few years, I have been in and almost out of the wilderness. It seems that just when I am on the edge of the promised land, I fall back on the bad attitudes that brought me to the wilderness in the first place. Today, I am in the wilderness, and it feels like I am smack dab in the middle–unmoving–no closer to the promised land than when I started. Like the Israelites, I am here because I have chosen to be or, rather, my choices have put me here. I want out. I plead with God daily to let me move forward. The more God says wait, the more frustrated I become. My attitude keeps me here. At any time, I could choose to change, but my flesh has grown comfortable with my attitude.
[Read Jeremiah 1-6]
Jeremiah 1:19 “They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you,and I will take care of you. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
I don’t want to live the rest of my life in the wilderness. I want to experience the freedom of the promised land. I want to be a woman of joy whose life is an example to others. When I complain about what’s going on in my life, I am complaining against You. Pretty soon my complaining turns into rebellion which leads to sin. Please forgive me for rebelling against You and help me put aside my complaining and find the joy that is available to me because I am Your child. Amen.