by Bible League International
Verse of the Day and Devotion
Whether the cloud stayed above the Tabernacle for two days, a month, or a year, the people of Israel stayed in camp and did not move on. But as soon as it lifted, they broke camp and moved on. – Numbers 9:22 NLT
As the people of Israel travelled through the Wilderness the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. Further, “Whenever the cloud lifted from over the sacred tent [the Tabernacle], the people of Israel would break camp and follow it. And wherever the cloud settled, the people of Israel would set up camp. In this way, they traveled and camped at the Lord’s command wherever he told them to go.” (Numbers 9:17-18) The pillar of cloud and the pillar of fire allowed the people to travel by day or by night. (Exodus 13:21)
As our verse for today tells us, the people never moved from wherever they were until the pillar lifted up from over the sacred tent and moved before them. Although they wandered in the wilderness for forty years, they never wandered through the wilderness unguided. Through the pillar, the Lord always showed them when to move and where to move.
There’s no cloud hovering over your life at the present time, but the Lord is still leading you through life. There’s no large external road sign that explicitly tells you when and where to move, but there’s an internal testimony of the Holy Spirit that does the same thing in its own way. Just as the people of Israel were guided through life, so are you guided through life. The Lord tells you when He wants you to move and where He wants you to move.
Of course, you don’t have to follow the internal testimony. You can ignore and suppress the guidance it provides. Maybe, on the one hand, you feel the Lord is taking too much time to get you to where you want to go. Maybe, on the other hand, you feel He’s leading you in the wrong direction. Either way, you can decide to stop following His guidance.
The trouble with doing this, however, is not only that you lose the benefit of the Lord’s wisdom on these matters, but you also lose the benefit of His favor and grace. In effect, you place yourself at odds with the will of God.
Ask the prophet Jonah how that worked out for him! (see Jonah Chapter 1)