“Then the Kohathites set out, carrying the holy things.
The tabernacle was to be set up before they arrived.”
Numbers 10:21 (NIV)
Change is inevitable—it’s how we handle change that really matters. Going with the flow of God’s sovereign will does not mean you will not meet with hazards like rocks, rapids, tree stumps, etc. But it is much better than trying to swim upstream which guarantees exhaustion but not progress.
It is a sad way to live for those who oppose the Lord. I refer to people who will not have the Lord rule in their lives (Luke 19:14). Those people are left to their own resources to wage war against any enemies such as disease, financial ruin, family quarrels, and so on.
Only the believer in Jesus has the privilege of coming to their Father in heaven and drawing from His inexhaustible resources. The first year my father, a farmer, was married he had a crop failure that forced him to go to a lumber mill and work for another man. My mother had never lived on a farm before her June wedding to Dad.
It seemed so unfair for her to live for weeks on end not having her new husband there to comfort her in the lonely, cold farmhouse. Bits of money were sent to her from the logging camp where my father worked. She was then able to buy some basics but often she ate potato soup for dinner many nights in a row.
My mother believed it was in those long lonely days of being on her own that she learned to pray. All through my years of growing up I knew my mother spent hours each day in quiet worship and prayer to her God. She rose up 2-3 hours before the family and had her devotional times, times that had always sustained her during both the hard and the happy times in life.
Our verse today beautifully illustrates the need for us to move on with the Lord as life happens around us. The Hebrew people always had the tabernacle (God’s house of worship) go ahead of them to the next stop on their journey in life. When they arrived at the place they were to stop and rest, God’s house was already there and set up to remind them of the God Who never leaves, never forsakes His people.
God leads and we follow Him. This is the formula for success in holy living. Two men—contemporaries—wrote the following lines:
Through all the changing scenes of life,
In trouble and in joy
The praises of my God shall still
My heart and tongue employ
Nahum Tate (1652-1715) and Nicholas Brady (1659-1726)
May the words of these two men reflect our lives today as we move on with God.