My wife and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary this week. In the grand scheme of things this may not be a long time but in 9 years we have had many a “discussion” when in disagreement. Often afterward we can’t even remember what the disagreement was after getting so distracted by “arguing”. When you are in a disagreement, stop and ask yourself if you are arguing over the real issue or if you have introduced a smoke screen by attacking someone’s character. If you are unjustly criticized, remember that your critics may be afraid to face the real problem. Don’t take this type of criticism personally. Ask God to help you identify the real issue and deal with that.
1 Miriam and Aaron began to talk against Moses because of his Cushite wife, for he had married a Cushite. 2 “Has the Lord spoken only through Moses?” they asked. “Hasn’t he also spoken through us?” And the Lord heard this.
13 So Moses cried out to the Lord, “Please, God, heal her!” 14 The Lord replied to Moses, “If her father had spit in her face, would she not have been in disgrace for seven days? Confine her outside the camp for seven days; after that she can be brought back.”
When we criticize and attack others wrongfully we too may ask for forgiveness and God will be merciful.
Many times when I face a tough decision the negatives cause me to lose sight of positives. Weigh both sides carefully. Don’t let the potential difficulties blind you to Gods power to help and his promise to guide
25 At the end of forty days they returned from exploring the land. 26 They came back to Moses and Aaron and the whole Israelite community at Kadesh in the Desert of Paran. There they reported to them and to the whole assembly and showed them the fruit of the land. 27 They gave Moses this account: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. 28 But the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there.
10 For all can see that the wise die, that the foolish and the senseless also perish, leaving their wealth to others.11 Their tombs will remain their houses forever, their dwellings for endless generations, though they named lands after themselves. 12 People, despite their wealth, do not endure; they are like the beasts that perish. 13 This is the fate of those who trust in themselves, and of their followers, who approve their sayings. 14 They are like sheep and are destined to die; death will be their shepherd (but the upright will prevail over them in the morning). Their forms will decay in the grave, far from their princely mansions.
The rich and the poor have one similarity. When they die, they leave all they own here on earth. The only riches they have are those they have stored up in heaven. To have treasure in heaven we must place our faith in God, pledge ourselves to obey him, and utilize our resources for the good of his kingdom. This is a good time to check our investments and see where we have invested the most.
Isaiah also touches on material investment when he writes:
8 Their land is full of idols; they bow down to the work of their hands to what their fingers have made. 9 So people will be brought low and everyone humbled—do not forgive them.
Though very few people worship carved or moulded images today, worshiping objects that symbolize power continues. Cars, homes, sports stars, celebrities, money etc. Idol worship is evil because it insults God when we worship something he created rather than worshiping him, our confidence is placed in something else rather than in him and causes us to rely on ourselves rather than relying in him. Let’s fix our eyes on him.
Hebrews is a wonderful description of Christ’s sacrifice for us and a call to persevere. Often I am reminded of my sin and feel very guilty. I am reminded here I have been given forgiveness through Christ’s incredible sacrifice. It’s permanent, powerful, sin destroying forgiveness we have from Christ and once we have confessed our sin to him, we need never to think of it again. Christ has forgiven us….