Pause

In our day-to-day lives of deadlines and expectations, we are challenged to remember that we are saved, by the grace of God, through our faith. We are not saved by perfection or status or wealth; we are saved by a relationship with God. We cannot earn salvation through good works or right words. God’s love and our faith in God is what saves us.

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Listen

They marched from Mount Hor on the Reed Sea road around the land of Edom. The people became impatient on the road. The people spoke against God and Moses: “Why did you bring us up from Egypt to kill us in the desert, where there is no food or water. And we detest this miserable bread!” So the Lord sent poisonous snakes among the people and they bit the people. Many of the Israelites died.

The people went to Moses and said, “We’ve sinned, for we spoke against the Lord and you. Pray to the Lord so that he will send the snakes away from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.

The Lord said to Moses, “Make a poisonous snake and place it on a pole. Whoever is bitten can look at it and live.” Moses made a bronze snake and placed it on a pole. If a snake bit someone, that person could look at the bronze snake and live.

Numbers 21:4-9

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Think

Think about a specific time when you were impatient. What was the situation? How did you feel? Were you angry or sad? Did you complain about the situation?

It is hard to blame the people in this scripture passage for their frustration and fear. As humans, we really don’t deal well with the unknown. We are anxious about our futures. We are anxious about performing up to expectations. We are anxious about relationships and friendships and the way they change. How much more intense would the anxiety be for us if God had called us to live in the desert?

Think back to the situation in which you were impatient. What was your attitude towards God? If you didn’t complain, thank God for being near to you in a way that you recognized. If you remember complaining, use this as a learning opportunity. Think about God’s love for you while remembering the frustrating situation. How might your conversation with God be different?

Becky Ullom Naugle

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Pray

Patient God, forgive me for those times when I have spoken against you because of impatience, frustration, or fear. Remind me today in many ways that you love me completely. Thank you for saving me through your grace. Strengthen my faith today and in the days to come. Amen.

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Go

Go into your day-to-day life confidently, knowing that God has brought you to life with Christ. Remember God’s love for you; remember your faith in God. You cannot go where God is not!

Becky Ullom Naugle

Becky Ullom Naugle, director of youth/young adult ministry for the Church of the Brethren, lives with her husband Patrick in northern Illinois. They enjoy family time, pets, the family lake house, and the Rocky Mountains.

Wondrous Love: Be Still, My Soul

Mark Hayes - markhayes.com

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