Tuesday, March 09, 2010

2010 – Mar. 9 – Hopeful Disappointments

Study from God’s Word Deut 31: 48-52; Deut 33: 1 – 29: Deut 34; 1 – 12; … Passage for Reflection: Deut 32: 52 … NIV 52 “Therefore, you will see the land only from a distance; you will not enter the land I am giving to the people of Israel."

My Journal for Today: I have been up on the crowning point of Mount Nebo where Moses was led to go to see the promised land [see Deut. 32: 48-52 - linked here], into which he would not set foot in his physical lifetime. We know why Moses didn’t cross the Jordan, as would Joshua later, leading God’s people into that ever so elusive Promised Land, from which God’s People had been restrained for 40 years of wandering so that they would be purged and ready to claim for God’s glory. Moses was restrained from setting foot in the promised land because of the ramifications of past sin.

But as I looked out over the expanse of that Promised Land on that day in Jordan when I was up on Mount Nebo, being where Moses must have stood, I could not get a grasp on the disappointment and emotional discouragement Moses must have felt, knowing that it was nothing but the consequences of his own sin which kept him from entering into that wonderful promised land which God had set before His people. Then as I looked out over that expanse of green and fertile lands, I remembered, … Moses may have physically been restrained from entering that land of promise; but the Promised Land of God will be Moses’ eternally because of his faith.

Yes, there would be another leader of God’s people, the Chosen People, Who would die before He would physically see the realization of God’s plan for His glorious elect. And that One, Whom we would know as our Savior, must’ve felt even more “hope-filled disappointment” when He languished in the garden of Gethsemane that night before His crucifixion.

Sometimes we encounter someone in this life who seems to die “before their time.” Maybe it’s a younger parent or grandparent who never gets the physical/emotional opportunity to see their children or grandkids blossom fully. Perhaps it’s someone who had a great idea which was developed after his death by someone else. I think of Martin Luther King, who had “a dream,” which is now unfolding, … but only after he was so ignominiously and precipitously killed. But, as F. LaGard Smith points out, there is no such thing as a “premature death,” … a concept which is really a spiritual oxymoron; because if someone had a small part in God’s will or His plan for God’s people, that promise will be fulfilled; and that person, who may have died before realizing that dream in this life, will see the fruit of his/her efforts in glory. As Smith writes it, ”No dream or efforts made that are consistent with God’s own good pleasure will be unfulfilled or wasted.”

The question becomes what are we doing NOW which is from or part of God’s will for our lives or for the future God has for His people. And we should (well, really, we MUST) know that anything which is launched or hatched today in God’s Name, of which we are a part, will be realized in God’s future; and being a part of His chosen ones, you or I will see the fruit of our labors growing, if not in this life, … in glory.

So, what we must do is seek to live within God’s will and for His purpose … for as long as we can; … and to move His dreams and plans forward as much as we can. We may not see the endpoint in this life; but as Moses will see the Promised Land and walk in it with his Savior, so we will be able to see our completed future unfold in eternity with God.

My Prayer for Today: Lord, point me in Your direction; and may I do all I can to see my part of that glorious plan unfold in my lifetime. Amen

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