One of our little ones had a birthday recently. She had her eyes set on the date since before Christmas. Her expectations were ballooning with each passing day. Detail after detail was being put into place in her mind. I tried my best to say things liked, “You can’t always get everything you want,” and “Your day will be special even if __________ doesn’t happen”. It would be obvious soon enough that she hadn’t heard my counsel.
The big day came and everything went according to her plan, for about 30 minutes. Her presents greeted her on the kitchen table. She was given her favorite doughnuts for breakfast. Her wardrobe matched her approval. All was right with the world. Then it happened. As I am brushing her hair and putting her favorite headband in it, she informed me that someone has to pick her up in the carline for early dismissal. I calmly state that her plan had a flaw. No one would be available to meet her request. All the drivers in the house had work responsibilities. Surely this one detail out of the list of seventy would not merit anything more than an, “Ok mommy, I understand.”
Never have I as a mom judged a result so wrongly! A meltdown of epic proportion occurred. Tears, wailing, and gnashing of teeth best describes her response. As a mom, I felt righteous indignation rising up in my heart. After all the plans and surprises I had worked and slaved over, this is what I am receiving for my efforts. We spent our drive to school with much discussing and rebuking. Even when I revealed her surprise cake, there was still an element of disappointment in her eyes.
His mercy and loving-kindness are unmeasurable!
This earthly illustration met with Scripture in my devotions that evening. In Exodus 15 the Israelites have just crossed the Red Sea. They are singing God’s praises for the detailed and miraculous way in which they were rescued. Everything was just as it should be. Their future was filled with visions of easy travel and a land flowing with milk and honey. Then it happened. There is not water to be found for 3 days. The meltdown begins. Complaining and wishing for what had been became their cry. Their expectation of easy and the Promised Land had been met with a small measure of discomfort and waiting.
In Exodus 15:24-27 God shows up and gives them what they wanted. He gives them their need in a miraculous way. He even includes the promise that He would not visit His people with any of the plagues that had been dealt on their Egyptian enemies.
"And the people grumbled against Moses, saying, “What shall we drink?” And he cried to the Lord, and the Lord showed him a log, and he threw it into the water, and the water became sweet.
A sad reality ends the chapter. If they would have just put their expectations aside, they would have seen His best was just another day’s journey. Twelve springs of sweet and refreshing water awaited. If they would just walk one more day. God knew the whole time that He had an amazing way of provision already prepared.
Like my little one, who had it all planned out, we can give in to our complaining spirit and give up on God’s best. Instead of letting go of our way and our plan, we hold onto that one thing that seems to be undone. He has the best for each one of us waiting to bring refreshment and peace.
No matter what we are facing or what we have not received in way of answer or provision, can we wait on Him? The best of God and His plan are what we will receive. Isn’t God worth walking one more day?
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