The last paragraph of the OT Testament reading spoke to my heart today. "Israel's Wilderness Detour".
We've just finished reading about how long and difficult it has been for the Israelites to get released from Egypt. I can imagine going into each plague they thought "Ok, now Pharaoh will HAVE to let us go!" and then nope, not yet. So finally, after the 10th plague they are released. It would be at this time in my own life struggles that I would feel like it's time for easy street. I deserve a smooth path now after all I've endured to get free of this bondage. But how often God has other plans that we don't see and understand!
As we read in verse 18 above, God led them in a roundabout way. BUT, not to be mean, or spiteful - or even to teach them a lesson. He knew that maybe the roundabout way was a longer journey, but that it would actually be the easier journey for them. Their heavenly Father chose the path that would enable them the highest chance of successful freedom! He knew how weak their minds were and that if they had to battle the Philistines, there was a high likelihood of them turning back to Egypt and picking the lesser of two evils.
Father God, help me to persevere in difficult times. When it feels like wave after wave of struggle, give me full and complete trust that You see what is ahead on each road and like any loving Father, will always direct me to what is best for me. Thank you for the "Wilderness Detours" in my life that have turned out to be the most glorious adventure of dependance on you. Amen.
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage: Exodus 12-13; Matthew 16