Thursday, July 15, 2010

“Grumbled in your tents”


Deuteronomy 1:26-27 (AMP) Yet you would not go up, but rebelled against the commandment of the Lord your God. (27) You were peevish and discontented in your tents, and said, because the Lord hated us, He brought us forth out of the land of Egypt to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites to destroy us.


Moses retold the story of the scouting mission into the Promised Land (Numbers 13-14). When the scouts returned with reports of giants and walled cities, the people were afraid to move ahead and began to complain about their predicament. But the minority report of Joshua and Caleb pointed out that the land was fertile, the enemy was vulnerable, and God was on their side. We become fearful and immobile when we focus on the negative aspects of a situation. How much better it is to focus on the positive-God' s direction and promises. When you are confronted with an important decision and know what you should do, move out in faith. Focus on the positives while trusting God to overcome the negatives. Problems don't have to rob you of the victory.


How does this apply to me?

Verses 27 really jumped off of the page at me: Deuteronomy 1:26-27 "but you rebelled against the command of the LORD your God; 27 and you grumbled in your tents and said..."

Notice the phrase "you grumbled in your tents." As I read that, the Holy Spirit pricked my heart. What am I saying at home about God, HIS church, or HIS people? God refused to allow the children of Israel to receive the promise of the promised land for 40 years, partly because of what they said in their tents. So the question for today is "what is going on in my tent that is keeping me from receiving Gods promise?" Are my words uplifting? Is my attitude Christlike? Am I submitting to those in authority in my life (employer, parents, teachers, etc)? Am I spending daily time in Gods Word? What is happening in my tent? Is God pleased?

What am I teaching my children "in my tent?" I am teaching the importance of God's Word by the importance I show it "in my tent." I am teaching the importance of controlling my tongue by how I control it "in my tent." I am teaching the importance of prayer by the way I treat prayer "in my tent." I am teaching character issues by the way I respect people "in my tent." I am teaching my kids how a husband and wife are supposed to treat each other by what takes place "in my tent."

Listen to what Jehovah God says in Deuteronomy 6 about how to act "in your tent"

Deuteronomy 6:6-9 Write these commandments that I've given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you
(7) and then get them inside your children.

It is so important that I get God's Word inside of me before I can get them inside my children. I get God's Word inside of me by giving it high priority "in my tent."

Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night. (8) Tie them on your hands and foreheads as a reminder; (9) inscribe them on the doorposts of your homes and on your city gates.

If the only place I discuss God's Word is at church, then I am raising children who believe that serving God is just about religion. But if I daily bring the Word of God into my tent, then I am teaching my children that being a Christian is about a relationship with a very personal God. It all starts with how I am living "in my tent." Christianity that isn't effective in my home, isn't true Christianity. So I ask again, "What's going on in your TENT?"

I made an acrostic of the word TENT to show what happened to the children of Israel to keep them from going forward into God's promised land:

Talk was laced with fear ("Giants are too big")

Expectations were encased in forgetfulness (How quickly they forgot the parting of the Red Sea, Manna from heaven, etc)

Negative Attitude replaced Faith ("Why didn't we just die in Egypt")

Trust in God displaced by Frustration ("Let's kill Moses and get another leader")

How about you? Is your talk laced with fear? Are you expectations encased in forgetfulness? Have you failed to remember how often God has come through for you? Have you allowed your faith to be overcome with a negative attitude? Has frustration displaced trust? These are questions that we need to meditate on today, if we are going to truly examine what is going on in our tent. It cost the Children of Israel forty years in the desert before they learned their lesson. What is it going to cost me?


"Lord, I come to you today with a heavy heart. My heart is heavy because at times I have been careless with what is going on in my tent. It is in my tent that I should be preparing my children for a life of trusting God, however I allow frustrations and time constraints to keep me from being all I should be in my tent. The children of Israel complained in their tents and missed out on your promised land for forty years. Basically, a full generation missed out on so many things that God had for them because of frustrations that manifested in the tents. That is why the lack of trust in God spread...inside the tent, where trusting God and His Word should have been emphasized, they were discussing how God had let them down and that He wouldn't finish what He started. When I begin to get down on them, I need to examine my own life...and tent. I repent of not being everything that you need and desire me to be in my tent. I make up my mind today that I will be more of a godly influence in my tent. I need your help and guidance. In Jesus' name, amen."