Suggested readings: Numbers 21:4-9, John 3:14-21
During their time wandering in the wilderness, the people of Israel
became dissatisfied with God and Moses (Numbers 21:4-9). Though they
had been rescued from slavery, were being fed manna and protected, it
was still not enough for them.
Then they encountered poisonous snakes, which bit many of them. The
Israelites repented and asked Moses to pray to God for help, the very
God about whom they had complained.
God told Moses to make a bronze snake on a staff for the people who
were bitten. When I visualize this scene, I see the staff planted in
the ground with the snake reflecting the sun's powerful light. The
Israelites who looked at the raised serpent were healed.
I seem to go through a period of discontent every ten years. "Shoulda, coulda, woulda" becomes my mantra. Behind each of these
statements comes a "but" or an "if." The reason is always about
someone else--never me. You see, I have taken my eyes off the "light." I want to make a difference; I want to see progress when and
where I believe it is needed. Then I spend so much time thinking
about what to do, who should do it, etc., that nothing gets done.
John 3:14-21 -- "And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the
wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever
believes in him may have eternal life." -- reminds us that God has
already done the most important work. God gave us Jesus, the Christ.
God has asked us to do just one thing: look upon Jesus and see the "light of the world." If we keep the focus on Jesus, there are no
shouldas, couldas, or wouldas. When others see us looking at the one
whom God has lifted up, they too will see the light.
Pray that we keep our eyes on Jesus so that others may also see.
Wilma Burren Dunbar is a Global Ministries missionary assigned to Gulfside Assembly in Waveland, Mississippi.
Lent/Easter meditations by missionaries and other resources.
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Mar 10, 2009