Look Around

The family was able to return to Galveston and get a first hand look at the damage from the hurricane. Mom said it's everything you see on television and worse. There's no way the TV can portray the stinch and desolate feeling accurately. One of my sisters was able to send me pictures of the house. It is still standing, but there is little hope anything can be done to repair it. Wow! That's an emotion that is difficult to explain.

I don't know if that is exactly how the Israelites felt, but it has to be close. Sure I, like many others, give them a hard time. We tend to focus on their disbelief and disobedience way more than their times of victory and faithfulness. That might very well be the intent of the OT writers so to keep us aware of our short comings as well. In this week's lectionary reading the Israelites are complaining again. Considering the events of the past 10 days or so (and when I go beyond myself and family, things that have happened that have impacted the lives of so many people I don't know) I have to wonder at first why Moses would be surprised at their complaining now.

Of course, part of the problem is they seem to have forgotten what God had already done for them. First, they were delivered from slavery in a most dramatic fashion. Then as they had been traveling they were hungry. I wonder how much I would have been complaining, too! This week they have no water. Hello! Its hard to live without water.

Perhaps we aren't stuck in a desert without water. It seems hard, however, not to complain when you are searching for any small trinket to salvage to escape a feeling of complete loss. We press on, though. The important thing to find in our search for hope is our faith as well. Complaining may seem the appropriate reaction or emotion; it may even feel like the only thing to do. We should not, however, forget what God has done for us. God will provide. He always has. It is our belief in those things not seen that strengthens us. We may loose everything around us, but our faith stays where we keep it and if we have it near it will be what helps us find God in all things with us. Stay blessed...john

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