Tuesday, April 20, 2010

memorial stones

Have you ever wondered why God doesn't seem to work in your life? Do you wish He would move in a big way...show you a sign? If you have read any of the stories in the Old Testament God shows His might in incredible ways. Parting the Red Sea, the sun stood still, manna from heaven, etc. I used to wish that God would do something big like that in my life... like part the Pacific Ocean or rain down Skittles. Something like that.

Most often I wasn't looking for a seismic event... I just wanted to see someone healed or see Jesus work some other miracle.

I have pondered this often... and I have begun to wonder if I miss or simply forget the ways God has worked miracles and provided for needs in my life.

Last week one of my family members was hospitalized. It freaked us all out pretty good. I cried after talking to my mom, fearing the worst and praying that our fears wouldn't be realized.

The next day, I heard that my cousin was completely better. The doctors couldn't explain it. I know many people were praying... a miracle?

Thinking back over my family's past, I remember things that God has done... unexplainable healings, a heart transplant, protection through pregnancies, cancer and other illnesses. Provision of work, food, and homes even in the toughest times. If you really want to, I'm sure you could explain these things away... the Pharisees tried too. After they heard Lazarus was raised from the dead they sought to kill Jesus and Lazarus (John 11 & 12). Signs don't create faith.

But I think they can strengthen it.

In the Old Testament the Israelites were prone to forget (like me) the things that God had done in their lives. In order to combat this tendency, God would ask them to set up a memorial to help them remember the work He had done in their midst.

In Joshua 3, we read about how God allowed the Israelites to cross the Jordan river on dry ground. In the following chapter, the Lord says this to Joshua,

"Take twelve men from the people, from each tribe a man, and command them saying, 'Take twelve stones from here out of the midst of the Jordan, from the very place where the priests' feet stood firmly, and bring them over with you and lay them down in the place where you lodge tonight."

The Joshua called the twelve men from the people of Israel, whom he had appointed, a man from each tribe. And Joshua said to them,

"Pass on before the ark of the Lord your God into the midst of the Jordan, and take up each of you a stone upon his shoulder according to the number of tribes among the people of Israel, that this may be a sign among you. When your children ask in time to come 'What do these stones mean to you?' then you shall tell them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord. When it passed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. So these stones shall be to the people of Israel a memorial forever." Joshua 4:2-7

I think I need to take the time to pick up memorial stones when God works in my life. I think I can do a better job of recording the mighty things He has done, and reflecting upon them in the valleys... as well as upon the multitude of ways He has worked in His word.

He has provided for me and cared for me in so many ways... may I never forget His grace and love.

What are some ways God has worked in your life?

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