The Israelites were wandering around in the desert and there came a time when they found something new to complain about
Num 11:4 And the mixt multitude that was among them fell a lusting: and the children of Israel also wept again, and said, Who shall give us flesh to eat? 5. We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick: 6. But now our soul is dried away: there is nothing at all, beside this manna, before our eyes.
The children of Israel were caught up in what once was not what was going to be. Here they are in the desert free of the burdens of slavery being provided for by a God who loves them and who had freed them and they are dwelling on what once was. I notice this in the church in various ways.
- Christians who look at their past lifestyle with desire.
- Church members who look at what used to be done or used to work.
- Pastors who look at previous ministries wishing they had never left.
In all these instances there is a neglecting of focus on the future. Christians sometimes are tempted to go back and live a lifestyle that is not glorifing to God because they think they can have more fun. The problem is if they would focus on what was ahead they would see that God’s future is so much more satisfying.
Church members do not want to change because something USED to work or they valued what they had in the past. The issue here is that methods HAVE to change because the world is changing. People do not communicate nor interact the same as they once did and ignoring that fact is death to any organization.
I am guilty of this last one at times. God has called us as ministers to a field and while we might not enjoy the “success” of a previous ministry or we encounter greater challenges in the new ministry we need to focus on what God is doing with us into the future. The past is gone and there is no going back.
What we always forget is the bad things that we went through in the past. The Israelites chose to remember the fish but forgot the severe beatings and cruelty that went along with their captivity. We do the same.
And always remember Proverbs 29:18.