The Keys to the Car

But even after all He did, you refused to trust the Lord your God,who goes before you looking for the best places to camp, guiding you with a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day.’When the Lord heard your complaining, he became very angry. So he solemnly swore,‘Not one of you from this wicked generation will live to see the good land I swore to give your ancestors,except Caleb son of Jephunneh. He will see this land because he has followed the Lord completely. I will give to him and his descendants some of the very land he explored during his scouting mission.
— "Deuteronomy 1: 32-36

To give you a little bit of context, Moses is giving instructions to the children of Israel, sometime around 1406 BC, 40 years after they wandered in the desert, and right before they were to enter the Promise Land. They were stationed on the east side of the Jordan River, on the plains of Moab, across from the city of Jericho.

When I envision this book, which means “second law,” I envision parents reiterating the rules of driving over and over again – to their newly driver licensed child- before giving them the keys to drive the family car.

I remember when I first got my driver’s license at 16 and I asked my mom if I could fill up the car, an errand that she was meaning to do that Saturday. I saw an opportunity to drive alone and I grabbed it. She relented and gave a strict list of rules: to wear my seat belt, to check the rear view and side mirrors before pulling off, to drive slowly, to call her when I arrived to the gas station, to call her when I was leaving the gas station, to wear my seat belt, to check the mirrors again, and to drive slowly. And, the gas station was just a 3-minute drive from our house, but still there was a list of rules because it was the first time I’d be driving alone.

But, it was the same with God. Before He would give the car keys (the ability for the children to go into the Promise Land), He, through Moses reiterated 12 times the rules. He was basically telling them to NOT forget all that He had done for them, not to repeat their mistakes of disobedience, which had already delayed them by 40 years of entering the land, and to keep Him first.

In reading the above verse recently, verses 32-33 caught my eye: “you refused to trust the Lord your God,who goes before you looking for the best places to camp, guiding you with a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day.”

I think that we forget that God is working on our behalf when we can’t see anything shifting in our favor. I think that we don’t realize that in our situation of waiting, God has already gone before us, looking for the best places for us to camp, guiding us with a pillar of fire by night and a pillar of cloud by day. We’re only seeing the closed doors- the rejection job interviews, the no’s from the bank for a house mortgage, or the relationships that haven’t turned into marriage- NOT knowing that those closed doors is God leading you to the right opened door.

We’re only seeing one side of our situation. But it takes a while to find the best campground, so trust God that He’s working things out in your waiting- He’s moving someone out the job He’s going to move you into, and preparing the work environment and that can take weeks, months, or years to get that dream job.

We know from God’s character that He loves obedience and there are consequences to disobedience. It’s not easy to wait on God and there are days you’ll want to scream and give up on God and the burning desire that you have inside of you, but trust that on the days when it doesn’t looking like anything is opening up for you that your Heavenly Father is working to find the absolute best campground for your to camp on.

Happy Friday x