At that time I pleaded with the LORD: “Sovereign LORD, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do? Let me go over and see the good land beyond the Jordan—that fine hill country and Lebanon.”
It's one of the first words we learn as a small child and one that none of us particularly likes to hear!
We've been praying for 34 Days now! God has been working answering prayers and we've seen miracle sightings! But, have any of us heard “NO!” yet; are we prepared to? I believe that we should be. If God told Moses “No”, we can expect that he will tell us “No” as well. Why? Because He is God and we are not. Because He sees the entire picture and we see only a small section. Because His will be done not ours!
When God told Moses that he would not be allowed to enter the Promised Land, He knew that Moses would be deeply disappointed. But, God could see the bigger picture. God knew the future and knew what Moses would face if he crossed over the Jordan River with the Israelites. There were battles to be fought that Moses could not even imagine. These battles demanded a different kind of leader. The Israelites had seen Moses at his best and at his worst. Consequently, they did not have enough respect for Moses to follow him unquestionably as a military leader. God had been preparing Joshua for that role.
It is so hard when God answers our request with “No.” A “No” answer makes us wonder if God no longer cares or if we have disappointed Him somehow. It shakes our faith. What kind of Father wouldn’t give good things to his children when they ask? Didn’t God say, “Ask and it will be given to you”?
We shouldn’t be surprised. God answered Jesus twice with “No”—once in the Garden of Gethsemane and again on the cross. In the garden, Jesus begged, “Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me,” and on the cross, Jesus called out in agony, “My God, why have You forsaken me?” but God didn’t change His plan. What if God had given in, saying, “Never mind. You don’t have to die for the sins of mankind.”? Would you and I ever be able to come boldly before the throne of God with our needs? Could we ever be saved?
Why would God ever tell us “No”? God always protects us. Sometimes a “No” or “Wait” from God keeps us from getting into a life-threatening accident. Sometimes slowing us down provides time for other things for fall into place for our benefit.
Are we willing to accept God’s answer of “No” without questioning—without rebelling, sulking or getting angry at Him. When we get to the point where our first instinct is to accept God’s answer, whatever it is, we grow deeper in our relationship with Him. We start seeing life—and ourselves—through His eyes. We are able to trust Him even more the next time He either urges us into action or demands that we just hold our ground where we are. Ephesians 6:13 tells us to “put on the whole armor of God...and after you have done everything, to stand.” (There’s that word again, stand!). That is what God was asking Moses to do—to stand still. Sometimes God doesn’t want us to charge ahead. Sometimes He wants us to stay exactly where we are because that is His will for us at that moment.
God is not insensitive to our pleadings. Moses had only one last request: “Let me go over and see the good land beyond the Jordan.” Moses wanted to see the fruits of his 40-years of faithful labor. But God had to let him down gently. He wasn’t being mean or cruel to deny Moses this request. Eventually Moses understood that God was tremendously pleased with what he had accomplished and was now rewarding him with well-earned rest—eternal rest in the arms of the “Sovereign Lord.”
So ladies, today, let’s come to God with our bold prayers and the desires of our heart and ASK Him! Let’s have faith that God loves us and can do anything we ask! We must BELIEVE in His power to do the impossible! And finally, we should prepare to have our prayers answered! Without a doubt we will RECEIVE God's very best blessings, the blessings that are in His will for our best!
For additional reading: Deuteronomy 32:48-52, Matthew 27: 45-46, Matthew 26:36-46, Ephesians 6:10-17, Romans 8:28
Dear Lord, I know that Your Ways are not my ways, and that there will be times when I don’t understand why You are telling me “No.” But I trust You with my life and my future. Make me so sensitive to Your Will that I am obedient to whatever You are asking me to do—even if that means standing strong right where I am. Thank You that “all things work together” for my good as I line myself up with You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.