Saturday, January 7, 2017

Missing God’s Will - Martin Wiles

The Israelites wandered in the wilderness for forty years until all the men who were old enough to bear arms when they left Egypt had died. Joshua 5:6 NLT

Though my cousin and I missed more than we hit, the thrill of the throw kept us trying.

A large magnolia tree stood near the porch of my maternal grandparents’ old farmhouse. Beneath it were mounds of dead leaves and my grandfather’s old pickup truck—and the weapons my cousin and I used to aim at signposts, dead blooms. 

Those were the days when young boys could legally ride in the back of a pickup truck, stand behind the cab, or sit on the tailgate and let their feet scrape the road. Oblivious to our devilment, our grandfather puttered along at 25 mph as we aimed our weapons at every sign we passed. Most of them we missed.

The Israelites weren’t much better at hitting God’s will than my cousin and I were at hitting the signs. God gave them the Promised Land, but fear caused them to miss His plan—a decision that cost them 40 years of wilderness wandering. 

Speed can cause me to miss God’s will. Though my grandfather was a slow driver, my cousin and I still had difficulty judging when to lob the magnolia bloom so it would strike the post. I equate speed with busyness—the breakneck speed with which I often live life. Jesus took time to rest and pray so He could be sure He didn’t miss the Father’s plan. 

Selfishness is another culprit that can lead to missing God’s will. At the age my cousin and I were, life was all about us. We weren’t concerned about the danger of standing in the back of the pickup truck. We were invincible. Throwing while moving could have caused us to tumble onto the road, but we didn’t think about such things. 

Then, of course, there is disobedience to contend with. God told the Israelites He would help them take the land. They would have none of it. Once our grandparents discovered what we were doing, they forbade us from throwing magnolia blooms at signs anymore. But we did it anyway. 

Bad influences can also cause me to miss God’s will. Ten spies—rather than two, persuaded the Israelites to turn back from the Promised Land’s border. Millions listened to the majority—who in this case was wrong. My cousin concocted the idea of throwing the blooms. I listened, and joined in the disobedience. 

What normally causes you to miss God’s will?

Prayer: Father, give us a resolve to obey Your will so we won’t miss what You want to do in our lives. 

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