26 May

BE LIKE BEZALEL

Nestled in the Exodus narrative is a little insight about an intriguing man named Bezalel.

Then the LORD said to Moses, “Look, I have specifically chosen Bezalel son of Uri, grandson of Hur, of the tribe of Judah. I have filled him with the Spirit of God, giving him great wisdom, ability, and expertise in all kinds of crafts.”  Exodus 31:1-3

What is notable about Bezalel and what can we learn from his life?

Bezalel was a master craftsman. He was a marketplace leader, he was spirit-filled and he used his platform for God’s purposes.

God places people in the marketplace for a reason. They are especially effective when they operate in the Spirit and recognize they are chosen for a specific purpose.

Here are the keys to being more like Bezalel:

Recognize we have been chosen for a specific purpose.

Walk in the Spirit.

Master something.

Use our gifts and talents for the good of God and others.

It is also interesting to note that Bezalel came from legacy. It appears his grandfather was Hur who helped Aaron hold up Moses arms during battle.

What a heritage and a reminder that we too have the opportunity to leave a lasting legacy for generations.

Oh to be more like Bezalel!

Thoughts to consider.

What have I mastered?

Am I walking in the Spirit?

Am I using my gifts and talents for the good of God and others?

I am I leaving a lasting legacy?

 

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10 May

The Roundabout Way

So many times it seems as though the Lord takes the long way home. Rather than take the shortest, fastest route with plenty of paved highways and roadside accommodations, he takes us the roundabout way on back roads through the wilderness.

We operate with a sense of urgency and hurry. He is never in a rush but always arrives right on time.

The Lord isn’t always logical but he is always purposeful. He has a plan and a road map for our lives that ultimately brings us to the promised destination.

When the Lord is leading the way, it will likely take longer than expected and will require some extended time in the wilderness.

Why?

It isn’t all that hard to understand when you reflect on human nature. We want it when we want it and we tend to want it now. Like the perfect chocolate cake, sometimes in life, the best things simply take more time.

In our angst for what awaits around the corner, the Lord encourages us to take in the view from where we are in the here and now.

Like kids on a family vacation, we nearly miss the important landmarks and sights to see because we are focused on whether or not we are there yet!

The Exodus account, of the Hebrew people, reveals that the Lord led them out of Egypt, not on the main road, even though it was the shortest, but in a roundabout way, through the wilderness toward the Red Sea.

There are times in life when we feel certain that the Lord missed the exit and is heading toward a dead end. Surely, he doesn’t mean to go in the direction we are heading? After all, if he keeps this up, how are we going to get through the Red Sea?

Trusting the alternate route on the GPS is the key. The GPS knows all the routes and is aware of where traffic jams are hiding. All things considered, the shortest route may in fact be the worst route.

Without faith it is impossible to please him. We would do well to recognize that we don’t always know what is best for us. We have to trust our GPS knows better.

We aren’t even on vacation. The Hebrews left Egypt like an army ready for battle. The road ahead is long, dusty and has challenges as big as the Red Sea.

But this we know, the road through the wilderness brings freedom from our past and all that has held us back. The road through the wilderness is packed full of life lessons. The road through the wilderness is guaranteed to be full of adventure and great reward.

God doesn’t always take the shortest and easiest route. He takes the wild route through the wilderness.

Pack your bags. The road ahead is certain to have plenty of twists and turns, hills and bumps, road blocks and high waters. Nonetheless, the roundabout way, His way, is the best way to get to where we’re going, the promised land!

(Inspired by Exodus 13:17-18)

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04 May

Offended?

Have you been offended?

What should you do?

Lash out?

Stuff it?

Pout?

Ignore it?

Run away?

Tell others about it?

Here is a novel idea.

If someone offends you, go to them privately and make them aware of the offense.

You might be surprised to learn they had no idea that they had offended you. Or perhaps you were too sensitive or misunderstood their intentions.

If the person listens and agrees, you have had great success.

But if you are unsuccessful, consider taking one or two others with you, who love you both, in a second attempt to try to work things out.

Hearing others perspective on the matter might help resolve the issue.

Still not successful? Then you might have to agree to disagree or involve a greater body of authority to resolve the conflict. It might even mean making a necessary ending.

Maintaining valuable relationships are worth the effort. But they do require healthy communication, plenty of compromise and a desire to understand another person’s perspective.

We don’t have to agree on everything. Discussions don’t have to turn into arguments. And even the best of friends have differences of opinion.

If being right or having your way comes at the cost of a longterm friendship or important relationship, it might be time to determine what really matters most in life. It might be time to overlook an offense and lean into, not away from, those you claim to love.

REFERENCE: Matthew 18:15-17 and I Peter 4:8