I have hit Deuteronomy in the last week, and I will be completely honest when I tell you that I thought about skipping through this book. I just wanted to get a head to where Israel finally made it to the Promised Land. I didn't want to keep reading about all the laws and rules and regulations. Seriously, Leviticus and Numbers was more than enough of all of that for a while!
But let me tell you... my goodness!! If you haven't read much or any of Deuteronomy GET ON IT! If you have read it before, read it again. It is chock full of fantasticness. There is not a single page so far where I haven't underlined, highlighted and made notes about something.
In fact just now I have been reading Chapter 8 while I have dinner cooking in the oven. (My first attempt at a roast chicken, by the way!) It is rocking my socks off!
Chapter 8. Not the chicken.
Verses 2 & 3 really got me going.
2 Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. 3 He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your fathers had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.
God led the Israelites into the desert and allowed them to wander for 40 years. 40 Years!
He could have led them straight to the Promised Land, but there was purpose in their desert time.
I love this revelation that I got as I read, because we all go through desert times in our faith journey. We all experience times where we feel like we are going in circles, getting no where, just dry. I took from this something that I hope to apply in my own desert times. And if anyone else out there that might read this is experiencing a desert time, I hope that this encourages you too.
The key to our desert times, the purpose to our desert times is revealed in verse 3. "...causing you to hunger..."
God wanted the Israelites to hunger, and not just for manna. He wanted them to hunger for Him
God was teaching them that "man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD."
Even the miraculously provided manna was only temporarily filling for the Israelites, yet it symbolised so much more then just food for their stomachs. God wants me to hunger for Him. To be desperate for Him to be the one filling me.