Yikes – it feels kind of wrong to even type that title for my post, but if we are really honest, don’t we all feel that way sometime? Maybe you are like me and have tried to read through the Bible and gotten bogged down in the laws and rules given to the Israelites in Leviticus and Numbers, for example. Ugh!
I think it is a good discipline for me to read through the Bible systematically, so for the last few years I’ve used a reading plan to read the Bible on my phone or my iPad in a year (or so) using the Youversion Bible app. This year I’m using the Digger Deeper Daily plan because it has three passages a day ordered to tell the story of the Bible in a cohesive way to show the links between the Old Testament and New Testament. I also use a Psalms and Proverbs plan to read a chapter in each of those books every day. Here’s what the plans look like on my phone:
Here’s a look of what I see each day – I like the feeling of accomplishment as the readings are checked off and if you miss a day, you can go to the settings and it will catch you up and shift the dates.
Last week I was reading in Numbers 14 – in the middle of a section of laws and regulations as the Israelites were going through the wilderness, thinking “here we go again,” kind of skimming along, when a story there really convicted me. After all that God has done to bring the people out of their slavery in Egypt, the miracles He performed, and the way He has provided for them, they still complained and grumbled when the going got tough. I can’t be too quick to judge them because I often find myself doing the same thing when things go wrong (or don’t quite go MY way.) God was very unhappy with them and had some pretty stern things to say!
I decided to journal the things that the people needed to stop doing on the left side of the page. I used large letter stamps and colored them in with colored pencils so they would really stand out to me. These are the exact things that I need to guard that I’m not doing because it makes God really unhappy! Stop grumbling, do not fear, stop questioning and longing for the past, and do not be ungrateful – it’s a good checklist for my attitudes!
Then as I read the chapter again, I highlighted the things that the Lord said that He would do – how He would take care of them, just like He cares for me. I need to trust that God is with me, accept His provision, and believe who He is. He has led me and provided for me just like He did for His people way back then, and I needed to take this rebuke to heart.
When you see them both together, it’s a great reminder that for every bad attitude, there’s an opposite positive thing to do… instead of grumbling, accept His provision; instead of having fear, trust that God is with me; instead of questioning what He’s doing, believe who He is.
These treasures in the Old Testament keep me excited to read and find the passages and examples that God wants to use to help me grow!
ESV Single Column Journaling Bible | Illustrated Faith Genesis Collection – journaling pen, letter stickers | October Afternoon stickers | Kelly Purkey stamps | Prismacolor Colored Pencils