Intimidating Expectations


Today’s Devotion: Deuteronomy 6

I love these following verses in Deuteronomy 6: (Warning: They are very intimidating!)

2 So that you, your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life.

5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.

7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.

On their own, each one of these verses could be a blog from my heart. Verse 2 reminds us that our actions, values, example and disciplines not only effect us, but the generations that follow after us. I wonder if my great, great, great, great, great grandparents would be proud to know that I’m walking with the LORD today? This technically goes all the way back to Abraham, the father of all nations, whom God promised to give him as many descendant as there are stars in the sky. I’m one of Abraham’s stars, are you? When you take that perspective, it’s pretty convicting to know the responsibility beset upon us for our kids and the generations that follow after us, isn’t it?

Then, to love the LORD with all of my heart, soul, and strength… WOWSA! That is an incomprehensible love to me, but is there anyone else worthy of such love? Love of the one who gave His son for my life, as a sacrifice for MY sins, that gives me assurance of eternal life that I don’t deserve? Should God expect any less from us? I say, “No!”

And He tells us to teach it to our children CONSTANTLY. That assumes we know His Word and know Him ourselves, therefore, have the ability to teach our children. What an awesome, overwhelming responsibility. All three of these verses are awesome, but overwhelming.

I’m going to put this into perspective, my finite mind’s perspective. This Christian walk is a journey. One day at a time, one decision at a time, one moment at a time. If I look at the big picture of Deuteronomy 6, I am plummeted with feelings of inadequacy and unworthiness. But if I recognize that these are, in many ways, are the fruits of what will result from my daily walk with the LORD, it makes me excited to turn the page and take in more of what God desires for me. It takes away the checklist mentality of checking things off like a to-do list that needs to be conquered. This chapter, and specifically these verses, implies that we have a daily commitment to learn, grow and live out His Word in our lives.

So let’s turn the page, let’s start a new day, full knowing that He is providing us with the best knowledge and wisdom we can get on this side of heaven and each day. He is giving us what we need to live successfully.

My Size, God Size


Today’s Devotion: Numbers 13

They say I’m petite. I find myself looking up when talking to other people. Sometimes, standing amongst a crowd can be very intimidating because it becomes even more obvious that I am significantly shorter and that’s both with or without heels.

Does size matter? I’ve been in martial arts long enough to know that I will never win a fight with strength. Perhaps its my size or perhaps its my gender, but even when I was in the best shape of my life, I never took for granted that most people, just in mere size, were stronger than me. I most certainly recognize that the fight I have the best chance of winning is to not be in the fight at all.

So here we have the Iraelities, spying on the land that they were told, by God, that they would conquer. Instead of trusting God, they size up the enemy and become intimidated. VerseĀ  33, “We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”

Grasshoppers? That’s the best they can do? Describe themselves as poor, helpless grasshoppers? Talk about losing a fight before you ever step into the ring!

What problems do we face in our lives that seem “too big?” Our minds are a battlefield and the older I get, the more I am convinced that the mind will take the easy way out or assume the worst most often. This survival tactic then leads us to one conclusion – avoidance.

Sure, that can be wisdom as a result of having done things the hard way before or had bad things happen when we had the best of intentions, but this is really not where God wants us when it comes to faith. He wants us to do what is right, not just take the easy road, and He wants us to trust in Him because through Him all things are possible. (Matthew 19:26).

As we continue to read though the books of the Old Testament, we will continue to see how man is weak and God is strong. If we depend on Him, trust in Him and obey Him – life will be much more fulfilling and we’d get to our goals expeditiously. Instead, we avoid [perceived] challenges, let the enemy intimidate us, and delay God’s goodness that He has planned for us. Next time we see a situation that appears to be too big, too hard or too overwhelming – let that be our Que to know that we don’t have to do it alone – God will get it done.