Have you ever found yourself getting really impatient about how slow things seem to go? Wish that the stage that you are in, or the stage that one of your children are in, or the stage of a project you’re working on would be over so you can move on to the next one? I think is part of the human condition. We often believe that things simply take too long. Whether it’s the potty training stage, a stage in the healing process after surgery, or the editing stage of a presentation or document, we look forward to the next stage.
Yesterday I was listening to Numbers 33 and it begins like this: “Here are the stages in the journey of the Israelites” and it goes on to list every single time they started and stopped. Now, grant it, this was an 11 day journey that they managed to turn into forty years because of all kinds of stupidity on their part. But when I think about what it must have been like to lead those people for forty years, stopping FIFTY times, it makes my head hurt.
After doing a bit of research, it appears that there were over 2 million people who went on this journey. Can you imagine making camp and breaking camp 50 times with 2 million people? The stress of it all is mind boggling. Moses had to lead these people, with God’s instruction, and I’m sure there were many times (possibly daily) when Moses was asking “Why????” Why me? Why them? Why here? Why now? and once again, Why me?”
But they got there. Eventually, After all those stops and starts they got to the promised land after going through each stage of the journey.
And so will we. The secret to the peace God has for us is to enjoy each stage as it happens and not fixate on the destination. Because the joy is in the journey.