Monday, February 27, 2012

Water from stones

Have you ever been in a place where you could choose between showing the love of God and speaking your mind?  Ever had the choice, at the end of a frustrating day or at the beginning of a long awaited task to stop and be filled with God's grace or filled with your own stuff?  

We aren't alone.  If you want to read about someone who really understood that check this out:

Water From the Rock
Numbers 20 1 In the first month the whole Israelite community arrived at the Desert of Zin, and they stayed at Kadesh. There Miriam died and was buried.
 2 Now there was no water for the community, and the people gathered in opposition to Moses and Aaron. 3 They quarreled with Moses and said, “If only we had died when our brothers fell dead before the LORD! 4 Why did you bring the LORD’s community into this wilderness, that we and our livestock should die here? 5 Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to this terrible place? It has no grain or figs, grapevines or pomegranates. And there is no water to drink!”
 6 Moses and Aaron went from the assembly to the entrance to the tent of meeting and fell facedown, and the glory of the LORD appeared to them. 7 The LORD said to Moses, 8 “Take the staff, and you and your brother Aaron gather the assembly together. Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water. You will bring water out of the rock for the community so they and their livestock can drink.”
 9 So Moses took the staff from the LORD’s presence, just as he commanded him. 10 He and Aaron gathered the assembly together in front of the rock and Moses said to them, “Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” 11 Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.
 12 But the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust in me enough to honor me as holy in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this community into the land I give them.”
 13 These were the waters of Meribah,[a] where the Israelites quarreled with the LORD and where he was proved holy among them.

I really wanted you to read the whole thing.  All of it.  The frustration of taking the people through the wilderness to the edge of their new home.  The years and years of arguing with people who could only think of their past in glowing terms instead of working towards a promised golden future.  The Israelite's could not pull it together.

Are you nodding with empathy because you know how Moses felt?  Or are you the complainer in the bunch? Do you feel like someone, somewhere is having it better than you do right here and now?  Are you thinking you know what God wants you to do without asking of Him?  

Moses asked, God spoke and Moses still did not listen.  How many times Mama's and Daddy's have you felt THAT?  Talking, talking, asking, asking and getting nothing. No respect. No listening. No love.

Uh...hold that thought...right there. Yeah that'll do.  Now ask yourself this - do you do the same thing with God?  When He speaks are we already doing our own thing in our minds?  When He tells us the fruits of the spirit are we trying to glue a few of our own to the tree?  Are we not both complaining Israelites and frustrated Moses?  At the same time even, at least some days.

This is not easy.  Doing it on our own is impossible.  God doesn't even want us to try. He wants us to trust Him.  

Strong willed, smart and determined.  Sensitive and big hearted.  That's my little boy.  Easily frustrated and afraid. Faith filled and God seeking.  And yet still a child needing me to help him.

When he is like an Israelite in the desert, complaining and making no sense, it can be hard not to be a frustrated Moses.  To smack down with the staff. To shout loud. To put my foot down as the Mama.  Proverbs as a hammer. Ouch...yeah it hurts. A lot.

When talking doesn't work. When being the heavy makes it worse. What can we do?  Do what God said to in the first place. Honour Him. Be the fruits of the spirit. 

Quiet voice, "Hey Daddy play his favorite gospel song please.".

Quiet Mama speaking to Daddy, "Daddy let this storm pass."

Suddenly a hostile, complaining, confused child enjoys some fruits of the spirit, starts singing and dancing to the Lord, right off the naughty spot and into my arms.  No more tears. No more fears. Just waters from the stones, washing our hearts and easing our thirst for Him.

We have hard jobs to do as parents, we have challenges as families, but I believe if we seek God before we give in to our frustrations we will find Him and in finding Him we will find the solution.   

This, of course, is very much like shampoo instructions: apply, lather, rinse, repeat.  Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.  God's grace, however, has no limits and no end.  There are no last chances for those under His grace.  

Find that song, or poem that can bring everyone's hearts to God.  Use it. 

This is ours: John the Revelator


  1. Well said and great reminder!

    Please feel free to stop by: Trailing After God

  2. Thanks Mel, and it's great to see you here! Thanks for coming by.