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Daily Reading: Numbers 33

Scripture Focus: These are the stages of the people of Israel... (Numbers 33.1a)

Devotional Thought: A few days ago, we came across "Moses' Bucket List." I mentioned that I want to travel around each of the Great Lakes. I have something else on my bucket list that I would someday like to do: Make a journey of all the stages of my life, seeing the places I've lived - and celebrating God's guiding grace in every stage of my life. In Numbers 33, today's chapter, Moses did just that... "These are the stages of the people of Israel."

The people of Israel had made it to the border of a new land. Their future stretched out before them. Their life as a nation was just beginning, but it was helpful to look back. The recounting of their history served not only as an occasion of praise and gratitude to God, but also as a reminder that they must drive out sin: "If you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then those of them whom you let remain shall be as barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides, and they shall trouble you in the land where you dwell" (v. 55).

Have you ever recounted the stages of your journey? I would encourage you to take some time to reflect on God's grace in bringing you to today. And, do so not only for nostalgia's sake, but also to spur you on to walk faithfully with your God in the days to come.

Prayer: O God of my past, thank you for accompanying me and guiding me in all the stages of my life. I consecrate myself to you, to walk with you in holiness and integrity, in love and faithfulness - for you have been faithful to me. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 1 "Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth"-- let Israel now say-- 2 "Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth, yet they have not prevailed against me. 3 The plowers plowed upon my back; they made long their furrows." 4 The LORD is righteous; he has cut the cords of the wicked. (Psalms 129:1-4)

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