Emily Teterud – Associate Marketing Director
Do you ever read a verse in the Bible that just kind of stops you dead in your tracks and brings a whole new, needed perspective? Yeah, that just happened to me the other day. I was doing some reading in Deuteronomy 2, and I ran across these words in verse 7:
“These forty years the Lord your God has been with you, and you have not lacked anything.”
That’s it! Short and sweet, but I couldn’t stop rereading it!
I was thinking about all the things the Israelites had been through and the complaints they had made to God along the way. I had rolled my eyes each time they suggested their slavery in Egypt as a preferred alternative to the current desert situation. Seriously? How hard is it to remember all that God has just miraculously done for you?
The truth is, at least for me, it is really hard to remember all that God has done. On a daily basis, my default is not reassurance that God has my life in His hands. My default is not thankfulness for answered prayer. But instead, I resort to uneasiness that my situation will be taken care of and fear that God hasn’t been listening to my prayers. I wonder if anyone would be rolling her eyes if a future narrative of my life story were being read and it expressed my petty doubts and fears in the midst of a clear picture of God’s sovereignty.
I want to be someone who remembers God’s faithfulness. I want to trust in a God that I know is moving and living in me! I think it takes some practice! Many of the Old Testament stories I’ve been reading have been reminders for the Israelites to teach their children about the experiences they had in Egypt. There are reminders for how to celebrate, how to remember the good God has done, and how to keep God’s goodness on the forefront of their minds at all times. So, it’s good to know I’m not the only one who has a hard time remembering these things! I find encouragement in knowing God specifically addressed the issue and has strategies for it.
I have two thoughts for how to get rid of the forgetful mindset that devalues the magnitude of God and His faithfulness:
- When I hear stories from other people about how God has shown up, it’s really encouraging. I used to get jealous and think, Hey, why isn’t that happening to me?! I want to experience God that way! But I’ve come to find so much power and encouragement in the church reminding each other of who God is. Real testimonies are so powerful in communicating to discouraged hearts. If you have experienced God show up in a tangible or encouraging way, tell people! You may not know when your story is going to revive a doubting heart that thinks God has given up.
- Am I living in a way that makes room for God? Do I understand my desperate need for Him? I would argue it’s challenging in America. Living a comfortable life sets us up to depend on comfort and base our decisions around it. And then we wonder why we aren’t experiencing the richness of God. Maybe it’s because we haven’t really felt the need for Him. Oh, what a dangerous place to be. Deuteronomy 6:10-12 addresses this danger:
“When the Lord your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you—a land with large, flourishing cities you did not build, houses filled with all kinds of good things you did not provide, wells you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves you did not plant—then when you eat and are satisfied, be careful that you do not forget the Lord, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.”
Find ways today to be reminded of who God really is to you. Thank Him for sustaining you, being your Savior, giving you life, and loving you unconditionally. Tell other people how you notice Him showing up. And know that you lack nothing, because the truth is that God is with you and He hasn’t left.Click here for the photo credit on this post