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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Invitation to let God lead

 10-12 The land you are entering to take up ownership isn't like Egypt, the land you left, where you had to plant your own seed and water it yourselves as in a vegetable garden. But the land you are about to cross the river and take for your own is a land of mountains and valleys; it drinks water that rains from the sky. It's a land that God, your God, personally tends—he's the gardener—he alone keeps his eye on it all year long.
(Deuteronomy 11:10-12)

The nation of Israel is just about to cross over into the land God had promised to them years before.  Their ancestors had this very day in mind - now it was becoming a reality.  The leader of the nation at the time was Moses.  He was speaking to Israel, as the Lord gave him the words to speak, of how it was that they were to enter the land, what it was they were to do with the land, but more importantly, how it was that they were to live once they arrived in the land.

Then he shares with them this little passage we have above - the land they would inherit would not be like that which they had come out of - it would be tended by God.  Without waxing too philosophical, there are some parallels to what God said to Israel that day and what he says to each of us as we enter into the newness of relationship with him.  The promises are similar for us - it is a new life, with a new caretaker - there is a change of mind and heart that is necessary to appreciate the difference.

At the point of our salvation, God asks for us to give him the reins of our lives - to allow him to be in control.  For some of us that are "control freaks", giving up control is a scary option - we have a hard time letting go.  For those of us that have been so "out of control", having some sense of "control" in our lives seems pretty promising.  With this change of control, our mind / will / and emotions are impacted.  We are reminded that Christ must be the central one in our thoughts - keeping ourselves focused on his will - allowing him to temper our emotions.  Most of us get that - but we struggle with trusting God.

Look at what God speaks through Moses - today is a new day!  This is a new land!  There is a new way of doing business that lays ahead!  It is no longer what you can do for yourself, but what God will do for you!  If we can get the idea that God does not want us "doing" for ourselves what he intends to do for us, we will enjoy a sense of peace in times that ought to cause a man without Christ much worry.  

Don't get me wrong - we have a part to play in victories won in our lives - but God is the one who tends over our lives like a gardener tends over a garden.  He is the one giving us both the strength and the ability to do as he directs - our part is the obedience.  For many of us, we get so caught up in the details of trying to work out life on our own terms that we miss how it is that God has already worked it out for us!  God is asking us to remember that we are no longer living in such a way that we have to do it all for ourselves.  He is central in our lives - he is at the controls - so we need to let him lead.

Our invitation today is to let God lead.  It is a land prepared for us - we need to learn how to enjoy the fruits of what he has for us in this new life.