“And they journeyed from mount Hor by the way of the Red sea, to compass the land of Edom: and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way.”
Serving the LORD can at times be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be a drudge. The Children of Israel allowed the circumstances of their journey to influence their soul. It got so bad that the verse above says, “…and the soul of the people was much discouraged because of the way.” What could cause the way to become discouraging? This way that they took was the journey to the Promised Land. This journey that they were on was guided by the presence of God. This way should have been filled with joy, but they allowed the circumstances to discourage their way.
If you are not careful, you will allow the circumstances of life to discourage the LORD’s way. The Devil is a master of getting us to focus on the circumstances of life and blame the way for those circumstances in an attempt to get us to change paths. Christian, if you are going to make it through life without quitting, you are going to have to silence the voices that the Devil sends your way to discourage you. There are four things that you can do to hearten the way of the Christian life.
First, don’t doubt God. It says in verse 5, “And the people spake against God…” What were these people doing speaking against the God Who delivered them from Egypt? They should have been praising God instead of speaking against Him. If you want to hearten the way, be careful about doubting God’s plan for your life. God never said that His plan would be a bed of ease, but His plan is always right and will lead you to a fulfilling life that brings joy. Don’t let the hardness of circumstances cause you to doubt God.
Second, don’t doubt God’s way. The verse above says, “…the people was much discouraged because of the way.” The way isn’t what made the journey hard; it was the circumstances they faced that made it hard. My friend, don’t blame the way for the hardness of the journey. The way isn’t the problem; it is simply life that has brought challenging circumstances. Don’t be looking to change ways just because the way has encountered challenging circumstances. The way of the LORD is right no matter what challenges it brings.
Third, don’t be reactionary towards people. Not only did the people speak against God, but they also spoke against Moses. Difficult circumstances have a way of causing us to react towards people adversely. If you want to hearten the way, don’t react towards people in such a way that would cause them to turn on you. Always be kind to people no matter how difficult your circumstances may be. You will find that those you want to adversely react to are the people whom God will use to encourage you if you don’t react towards them in an adverse manner. Don’t hurt the encouraging influences just because you are facing difficult circumstances.
Fourth, don’t make decisions to return. These people wanted to go back to Egypt because their way became difficult. Quitting should never be an option. These people forgot that life was harder in Egypt than it was in their current circumstances. Going back to the world will not make life easier; instead, it will make life more difficult. If you will take your eyes off the circumstances of life, you can hearten your journey to the Promised Land that God has for you.