May 21, 2018

THE WILDERNESS.


My church started a new curriculum for our children's church program and it's been a challenge to dig through the year-long study on the Old Testament, especially after spending years on our old lessons and Bible stories. But it's also been the kick in the butt that I've needed to dig back into those first books of the Bible and re-read those stories through the lens of a teacher for preschoolers.

For the past few months, we've been teaching about the Wilderness and Israelite's wandering in the desert before entering the Promised Land. The years (years!) were long, the weather was hot, the food was minimal, but I know that the complaining was plentiful.

And I can't help but see myself in these people. The way they doubted God's goodness and provision when the journey seemed endless. And the way they so quickly turned to idols and statues when He didn't seem near. Or the way they complained and whined instead of praising and worshiping.

I grew up thinking that the New Testament was where I would find myself. That surely, the newer stories were much more relevant to a young person like me. I mean, history never repeats itself, right?? 

But the most rewarding part of teaching these lessons to the kids is telling them how much God loved His people no matter what. How He cared for His creation. How He provided, even though they continually turned His people backs on their only true Rescuer.

How God fed His people and sent manna from heaven. But it was only the amount they needed for the day; truly reminding them of their need for dependence on Him alone.

And how He gave second chances after Achan's sin so the Israelites could battle and win the land of Ai once more.

And how He did the impossible by opening the Red Sea, knocking down the walls of Jericho, and eventually sending Jesus to save us all.

The wilderness seems bleak and the journey seems long, but my goodness, the view at the end is so totally worth it.
© IN ITS TIMEMaira Gall