Moses and me: Practicing Faith and Pragmatism

I am too selective in my Scripture reading. My favorites include Psalms, Jeremiah, Habbakuk, Ephesians, Hebrews, and James. The Samuels, the Corinthians, and the Timothys are also nice. Revelation is just right out.

I recently finished Colossians, which I quite enjoyed. However, it is very similar to Ephesians. So, I'm going to try something a bit new and go with Deuteronomy.

Simply beginning with chapter 1, I saw that even Moses struggled with the problem of both trusting God and living pragmatically at the same time. God was very clear on several points; Israel would re-enter the land, they would do so at the end of the 40 year exilic period, and God would be with them.

Even so, Moses spent much time in preparation. He organized a diverse and thorough leadership structure, so that the majority of problems could be handled locally and only the largest issues would hit his desk... or his camel, I suppose. Further, though he knew God had blessed this generation, he spent a lot of time (specifically, the length of the book of Deuteronomy) reminding them of the Law and exhorting them to obedience. (Hm... a diversified organizational structure and ethics training. Maybe Wall Street should read Deuteronomy too!)

This interplay between "God WILL do it" and "we should honor his blessing with faithfulness" is a powerful though sometimes confusing one.

On one hand, I need to continue to remind myself that God is a God of faithfulness. He knows his purposes for me, will bring things about in just the way I need, and will maintain sovereign care over my future.

On the other, I still need to focus my mind on my job, shepherd the people I love (both prayerfully and pragmatically), fulfill my ministry obligations, and look for opportunities to build the kingdom.

Moses knew the weakness of his people, and was careful to strengthen them with clear teaching and exhortation, as well as pragmatic structures to prepare them for the rigors ahead. I hope I can do the same to honor all God's blessings, trusting while doing so that his sovereign guidance steers the ship.

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