Yesterday we talked about God allowing things to happen for a purpose. Let’s think about what is described in the Bible book of Exodus. What was God trying to do to Israel during 40 years in the wilderness? If we can understand this a little bit more, it will help us to know more about God.
Moses lead Israel from Egypt to the wilderness of Sinai. In that 40 years journey what God did was transform the slave characteristics of the Israelite people to the characteristics of mature servants. What are the characteristics of slaves and mature servants? Lets’ look at slave characteristics first. They tend to feel insecure about the environment surrounding them. They are used to relying on themselves. It is not easy for them to trust others and God, even if God shows many miracles to them, it’s still hard for them to trust God’s promise that He won’t harm His children. When there is difficulty they tend to try to solve the problem themselves and don’t want to rely on God or submit themselves to God. It takes time to wait for God to address the issues and they don’t have patience to wait because of their fear. They are used to working hard and earning what they deserve. They don’t believe in mercy or grace. They treat others like they have been treated. Their spirit is oppressed and entangled. They don’t believe the happiness of others is worth as much as the earnings from their work.
How about the characteristics of mature servants? They are full of peace and joy, and are deeply satisfied. They understand what God does in their life for good purposes, such as sometimes God opens doors for them, sometimes shuts the doors to them, sometimes entangles them, and sometimes deprives them of certain things. For everything God did to them they feel content and understand the Love from God. When they look at things that happen to others they know that God lets those things happen for a reason, although they may not know the reason immediately or ever. They won’t feel miserable about the things around them or allured by them. They deal with the things around them in the way God would want them to. They know God and know what would make Him pleased. They become alive spiritually and have the capacity to help others and become a blessing to others.
“Among the shepherds was His Holiness Moses. At a time when the tribes of Israel were wandering and dispersed, he assembled, united and educated them to higher degrees of capacity and progress until they passed out of the wilderness of discipline into the holy land of possession. He transformed their degradation into glory, changed their poverty into wealth and replaced their vices by virtues until they rose to such a zenith that the splendor of the sovereignty of Solomon was made possible and the fame of their civilization extended to the East and the West.” – Abdu’l-Bahá
Here you get a big picture of what is God’s will. What is His plan for us in our life. We can look at it as training us to become a good servant or just like a loving Father guides His child to become a mature adult who can inherit Canaan, the land of everlasting richness.
Before we know God, we all tend to have the characteristics like Israel. When things happen we complain in an untrusting and rebellious way. By knowing God and understanding His heart and His plan for us, so we can be like a little bit more grown up child. The virtues we try to develop in our life bring about spiritual growth for our future life. This will make perfect sense for the purpose of our life~ to grow spiritually and serve others. I hope this help you know what we should focus on in our life. Along the journey when we see ourselves respond to the difficulty around us in more mature way then we can tell ourselves we are in the right path. Let’s help each other in the same journey we have in our life.