Daily Devotional – December 31
Written by: Jerry Abshire
Scripture: Exodus 18:7-8
2020 has certainly been one for the record books! I am ready for the year to be in the rear-view mirror. For me and my family it has been especially trying on many levels. I’m sure it has been the same for you and yours.
A few years ago, I was in a Bible study reading about Israel’s escape from Egypt and their 40-year journey through the desert to Canaan. I remember their many trials and how much it was reported they grumbled and complained. In Exodus 12 they complained about their bondage in Egypt; in 14, they cried out in fear of being killed; 15, no water; 16, food not ample; 16, tired of the same old food; 17, where is our water?; 32 Moses is taking too long on the mountain. The Israelites perpetually complained about being in the desert, being tired of their circumstances and not being amply taken care of. In Exodus 32 God calls them “a stiff-necked people.” During this study I can remember being aghast that they complained so much after God, in the midst of their complaining, had perpetually taken care of their every need. It was like they had no memory past a single day. We all remember how their desert journey ends. The Israelites, despite their lack of faith and ongoing discontent, finally make it to the land of “milk and honey” – just as promised.
Unfortunately, I can draw far too many parallels between Israel’s 40 years in the desert and my nine-month trial with the COVID-19 pandemic. Oh, how I complained about such trivial matters and minor inconveniences. God must have looked down on me while shaking his head and thought, “Have I not always taken care of you and your family? Did you not study the book of Exodus?”
Let us start off 2021 by doing what Moses did as reported in the 18th chapter of Exodus:
So Moses went out to meet his father-in-law and bowed down and kissed him. They greeted each other and then went into the tent. Moses told his father-in-law about everything the Lord had done to Pharaoh and the Egyptians for Israel’s sake and about all the hardships they had met along the way and how the Lord had saved them.
Tomorrow, let us begin the year by raising our voices and telling everyone about what the Lord did for us in 2020 and about the hardships we met along the way and how the Lord saved us!
Prayer: Lord, I am regretful of an all too often, poor showing in 2020. Thank you for being merciful with your stiff-necked child and for your promise to never leave nor forsake me. It is with a grateful heart that I commit to drawing nearer to you in 2021. Amen!