Last week, I shared a little about the fact that my family and I are in the midst of many changes and even more possible changes. It’s an interesting place to be, the transitional phase. Just this side of moving forward. Still unsure of exactly what we will and will not be doing.
As a new month approaches this week, I have been asking God about what verses He would have me commit to memory in February. Today I happened upon a link one of my friends shared on Facebook about parenting advice. I clicked on it because, well, it’s been a week of testing for me in that department. It referenced a familiar passage in Deuteronomy I’ve heard just shy of a million times about purposeful parenting, but gave a great perspective I hadn’t considered before. I really encourage any parent to check it out here.
This article led me to go back and read the verses leading up to the passage with which I was familiar to put it all in context. While I did that, God showed me so much more about how this passage of scripture is written for my life right now.
The Israelites are on the verge of entering their Promised Land. They know all too well the stories of captivity that had originated this grueling journey. They watched their parents die in the wilderness, waiting for the day when it would all be worth it. The day when they would cross that river that separated them from God’s appointed home for them so they could at long last dig their toes into the blessed soil and breathe in the fresh air of blessings.
I can relate with them on some levels right now. The journey through the wilderness of waiting has been a lot longer in my head than it has been in reality, but I can appreciate the power of anticipation. I can also empathize with the trepidation they felt when they realized how scary it can be to come out of that familiar land of waiting. As bleak as the wilderness of waiting can be at times, there is still some level of comfort that forms with its familiarity. While I don’t love dwelling there, it’s not scary like the unknown can be.
As I read through the first verses of Deuteronomy 6, I found myself standing at the Jordan River, just like those wary Israelites, getting my first glimpse of the Promised Land. Wanting so badly to forge through the river to arrive at long last while feeling so completely unprepared.
God knows how unprepared I truly am on my own, so He laid out careful instructions.
Now this is the commandment, and these are the statutes and judgments which the Lord your God has commanded to teach you, that you may observe them in the land which you are crossing over to possess, that you may fear the Lord your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged.Therefore hear, O Israel, and be careful to observe it, that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the Lord God of your fathers has promised you—‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.
“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the Lord our God, as He has commanded us.’
~Deuteronomy 6:1-9, 25
As I move forward, I must never forget the God who brought me out of captivity, strengthened me in the wilderness of waiting, and called me to a special purpose. I pray so fervently that I do not lose sight of His goodness nor neglect His commands.