The Israelites wondered around in circles in the wilderness for forty, almost forty-one years on a journey that would normally take eleven days. They didn't step up to the next level as you would climb up a staircase of winding stairs. As such, one step after the other, designed to take you up a level each time - step by step. Instead, they wondered around the same mountain repeatedly.
Have you ever asked yourself, why am I still going around this same mountain over and over? Not making any way to move to the next level? Why am I still going about my day, listening to the same old commentaries on television talking about what's wrong with this person and how this person is not who they say they are. Why am I putting up with the same old people talking about what's wrong with someone and why they can't do what they need to do? Why am I letting the same situation trample all over me, the blame game, the victim cry, the fear of people talking about me for standing up for what's right? Is there a reason why I just can't climb a step? Is there a reason why there is something going on with everyone else, but me? Is there a reason why I just can't seem to progress? Is there a reason why I can't discipline myself to eat healthy foods that will nourish my physical body so that I will have the energy and stamina to carry out my service?
Deuteronomy 1:26-34 identifies several reasons why the Israelites wondered for so long not making any progression. These same principles are the key to realizing what it takes to keep stepping up instead of stepping aimlessly.
- Rebelling against the commands of the Lord.
- Murmuring in the tents and thinking that they were hated because they had to endure a little discomfort to get to the Promised Land. (Playing the victim game)
- Discouraged by the size of the people in the land.
- Afraid of the men already there. Not knowing that they were preparing the land for the promised generation.
- Not believing that God would do what He said he would do.
- Obey God's commands. Study, learn, and apply the Word of God and do what it says to do. It's just that plain.
- Stop complaining in our house and thinking that everyone is out to get us or does not like us.
- Don't look at someone else and become intimidated by their rudeness, loudness, or physical size.
- Just because someone occupies a place does not mean that they were ordained to be there. They could be there holding a space for you.
- Believe every word that comes out of the mouth of God. His word shall not return unto him void.
It is my prayer that you and I will understand that stepping up requires obedience and getting to a place that God promised us. Sometimes it may take a while to get there. However, with faith and perseverance we can move upward and learn that it doesn't have to take as long if we remain in Him, stay focused on His Word and condition ourselves to do His Will.