Between Promise and Fulfillment

Quote from Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson

February 2

Between Promise and Fulfillment

Today’s Scripture Readings: Psalms 18:37-50 | Exodus 15:9-17:7 | Matthew 22:1-33 | Proverbs 6:20-26

Today’s Scripture Focus: Exodus 15:19 – 17:7

Moses and Aaron told the people of Israel, “This evening you will know that it is God who brought you out of Egypt, and in the morning you will see the Glory of GOD. Yes, he’s listened to your complaints against him. You haven’t been complaining against us, you know, but against GOD” Exodus 16:6-8, The Message.

The place between promise and fulfillment is a difficult place to be. And that is where the Children of Israel find themselves. God has promised them a land flowing with milk and honey, but it is hard to find either in the middle of the desert. There is often difficult territory between the promise and its fulfillment.

In these times where faith is tested and hope is put on hold, it is easy to give in to the temptation to complain and grumble. Generally it’s not difficult to find a group of fellow grumblers who will be more than happy to join you.

“In the desert the whole community grumbled against Moses and Aaron: ‘If only we had died by the Lord’s hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death.'” (16:2,3)

It doesn’t take long for grumbling to infect a whole community of people. It’s a contagious disease.

We don’t often realize it, but grumbling really evidences a lack of faith and trust in God.  Often we grumble at our leaders without realizing the truth of this passage: “You are not grumbling against us, but against the LORD” (16:8).

It’s not easy to wait.  It’s not easy to trudge ahead when the circumstances seems hopeless.  It’s not easy to hold on to the promise when there is no “milk and honey” in sight.  But this is not a time to grumble and complain, it’s a time to trust and obey.

Faithful and Loving Lord, forgive me when I fail to be grateful. Forgive me when I grumble. Help me to find hope and to persevere in faith when I find myself between promise and fulfillment. Amen.

About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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