Faced with hardships in their sojourn, “the Israelites started wailing and said, “If only we had meat to eat! We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost – also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. But now…we never see anything but this manna…” Numbers 11: 4-6 (NIV).
Have you ever heard that people forget so easily! Even all that God has done for them. The story of the Israelites as they were liberated from Egypt begun with a host of miraculous revelations culminating with the parting of the Red Sea. Yet not long after much of that was forgotten.
Now the last time one checked life was not that rosy while all were lost in Egypt. Long after Joseph the patriarch had departed a new generation of rulers had taken over Egypt without regard to his role in saving her from a crushing famine. “So they put slave masters over them to oppress them with oppressed labour and worked them ruthlessly.. They made their lives bitter with harsh labour in brick and mortar and with all kinds of labour in the field..” (Exodus 1:11-14).
So, now here liberated in their walk to freedom, having encountered certain obstacles along the way, not a few but multitudes started wailing with complaints.
Two things are evident. Just as the new Egyptians had long forgotten about Joseph, so too were the Israelites quick to forget. Even with the gift of manna they still found room to vent. We later see that while the Lord would yield and give them quail from the sea, “the anger of the Lord burned against the people and he struck them with a severe plague” (Numbers 11: 33).
May our lives not be so poor and fickle that we too are quick to forget and start wailing with constant complaints. We would do better to count our blessings that God is at work and has never left us alone!
As the song goes, “When upon life’s billows you are tempest- tossed. When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost! Count your many blessings, name them one by one. And it will surprise you what the Lord has done!”
Prayer for today: Lord Father in heaven, today I pray that I live a life of gratefulness to you, counting the many blessings you have done in my life, one by one!