Monday, February 5th
Devotional written by Pastor Jason McMaster, Executive Pastor
TEST OF PATIENCE
A friend once shared a story with me about the basic training he did while attempting to qualify for an elite unit in the British special forces. On one occasion, his squad was asked to hike all night while carrying a heavy backpack the entire time. They were told to continue the journey until daybreak, where a hot breakfast and coffee would await them. He explained that if they dropped their pack at any point during the hike, they would be dismissed. As the night wore on, a few gave up from sheer exhaustion. As the sun rose, he recounted that most of his squad made it to the checkpoint where breakfast was supposed to be. As they arrived, the drill sergeant told them breakfast was not there, and they were told to just keep going. At that point, he said well over half of the squad dropped their backpacks and walked away. I asked him, “So what did you do?” He explained that he chose to keep going, and around the very next turn was the breakfast originally promised!
As we read Exodus Chapter 32, it’s interesting to see that the people gave up on Moses because he had not returned in the time frame they were expecting. They did not ask Aaron to form a search party to look for Moses. They did not offer to pray to God for his safe return. They simply gave up on him. They also gave up on God and His faithfulness to them as they asked Aaron to make them new gods. They had been rescued from captivity in Egypt through Moses’ leadership and the Lord, and in a moment of impatience, they gave up on both of them. What they did not know was that Moses was about to return from the mountaintop with an amazing gift from the Lord – the law of God written down, as we know, the Ten Commandments. They missed that initial blessing from Him because of their impatience.
Final Thought: Perhaps the Lord is asking you to wait for Him and His timing. Maybe there is a tough situation or even a decision you are making right now, and you are waiting for answers. The story I shared of the man in the special forces training remained faithful and steadfast; he kept his cool and was patient with the situation, knowing that obedience to the commanding officer was all part of the exercise. The Lord asks us to be faithful and obedient to Him, so leave the rest up to Him because He is loving and faithful and has a plan for us.