Raise your hand if you’ve ever thought the children of Israel were pathetic. Me too. I mean, really people, God brought down supernatural plagues on your enemies, freed you from slavery, and parted a sea that you walked through, and you still doubted and whined?
Yep. They did. “Now the people complained about their hardships in the hearing of the Lord, and when he heard them his anger was aroused” (Numbers 11:1). God invites our cries for help, but he wasn’t pleased with this situation.
It’s easy to point out the obvious flaws in the Israelites and in other people’s faith, but you can guess where I’m headed with this: I’ve definitely got a plank in my own eye to attend to. I’ve got plenty of thoughts and words that display my lack of gratitude and trust in God. You probably do too.
So let’s be humble and learn from the Israelites since we need the help: 1) Practice gratitude. Focus on what God has given you instead of what he hasn’t. 2) Avoid earthly tunnel vision. Keep your eyes on heaven and on God’s bigger plan. He cares about your earthly problems, but he cares about your eternity more. 3) Remember how he’s been faithful in the past to help you trust him in the present. Like Joshua said, “Not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed” (Joshua 23:14).
By the way, focusing on my own sin makes me really thankful for two things: First of all, Jesus. Second, that my sins weren’t recorded in the Bible like they were with the Israelites!