So, I told you before that I’m in a new Bible study here in Tyler. We study a book of the Bible each week, going in order from the beginning to end. It’s a 3 year study to go through the whole Bible. I started 2 weeks into it, so I missed Genesis and Exodus. I will be going back to do them though eventually. A couple weeks ago was Leviticus. A book on holiness. You know, Leviticus gets a bad wrap. I think it’s because it repeats itself quite a bit and is all “you are clean” this and “you are unclean” that. 🙂 It’s a little tedious to read at times, so I completely understand those that decide they are going to read through the whole Bible and start in Genesis and then quit halfway through Leviticus. I mean, who of us hasn’t done that?!? Am I the only one?? I felt a great accomplishment the other day when I was able to say I had finally read ALL of Leviticus! Haha But I will tell you there were a few things that totally struck me while I was reading. Actually, quite a few things (you know me!) but I wanted to point out a couple of them.
First, the theme to Leviticus is holiness. The Israelites had soo many rules and things they had to do in order to keep themselves clean. It makes me completely grateful that I don’t have to remember so many details or have to kill animals for a pleasing sacrifice to the Lord. It does make me ponder what sacrifices I do make to the Lord, and if they are pleasing to Him. Sacrifices were a part of their life. Are they a part of our’s? I don’t mean animal sacrifices of course. Jesus has taken that place. The ultimate Sacrifice-Praise Him! But what kind of sacrifices do we give to the Lord?
Second, I was struck with how quickly the Israelites forgot what the Lord had done for them. Here they were with these amazing signs and miracles and they praise Him one moment for them and then forget them and grumble the next! I think we do that too. I know I do anyway. I’ve been guilty of doing it for the past few weeks actually. I’ve seen the Lord working in my life and in my family’s life as He brought us here to Tyler. I see Him working on our behalf in Michael’s job and in starting to bless us with friendships and us finding a church home. And yet, I am just as guilty as the Israelites with grumbling. Grumbling about missing my husband due to him working long hours, grumbling about everything I miss in Phoenix/Scottsdale, both the big and the small, grumbling about the day to day things that I have to do here at the house. But one of the things I learned going through Numbers (yes, I just switched books on you) was that grumbling is an attack on God’s character. Wow, right??? I am fully aware that having that knowledge should have totally made me turn from the grumbling. I’m just being real here. I am not going to tell you that I heard that and then turned away from the grumbling. This is something the Lord has been working in me on and is continuing to work on me. I miss Phoenix. I miss my friends, the mountains, my church and leading worship, my Element community, and restaurants and everything else I left behind. But I have been so busy focusing on what I am missing that I think I am missing what the Lord is doing in my life right now. Just being honest here. But one of the things I am learning from the Israelites and their journey is that they grumbled. A lot. And the grumbling was just the beginning of their unbelief. It was the start, and it was the outward expression of their heart attitude. Their unbelief. I don’t want a heart attitude of unbelief. I’m trying to find the balance of missing those that I love, and being content in my present situation, even if it does feel like a wilderness at times. Are you in a wilderness situation in your life right now? Ever been in one? How was/is your reaction? Are you grumbling, or are you continually praising the Lord for His provision, His signs and wonders (no matter how big or small they are), and where He has you right now in your life? I’m not telling you it’s easy. I’m the first one to tell you just how hard it is, but I am coming to the realization that it all starts with my heart attitude. What’s your’s?
There will be more on heart attitudes coming I’m sure…:)