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Be Who You Are

A common theme in my conversations with people revolves around the questions, “Why did God make me the way he did and how am I supposed to respond?” In my case, I have often wondered why God gave my family athletic and teaching abilities but did not give us ears for music. Some people wonder why they aren’t better at making money. Others wonder why they have a hard time focusing because creative thoughts swirl in their heads. Some wonder why they are so tall or so short or more round than others. And the list goes on. Just last night I was asked how I would respond to a situation if a friend of mine insisted on doing something he obviously wasn’t gifted to do. It wasn’t hard to answer because I believe it is quite common. John Maxwell is famous for saying, “Anyone who thinks he is leading but has no followers is simply taking a walk.”

My Next Generation

The truth is that God was in charge of our creation. We are who we are by the sovereignty of God. Sometimes that is great news. When you are good at what you like to do and circumstances of your life are pleasing, it is easy to say thank you to God. The problem comes when who you are creates difficult choices. Enter the daughters of Zelophehad in Numbers 27:3-4. “Our father died in the wilderness. He was not among Korah’s followers, who banded together against the LORD, but he died for his own sin and left no sons. Why should our father’s name disappear from his clan because he had no son? Give us property among our father’s relatives.”
Moses was in the process of dividing up the land of Canaan among the tribes of Israel. We must keep in mind that this was the key to their success. If you had land in that day, you had the opportunity to build a business, have shelter and develop a financial foundation for future generations. Even if mistakes were made along the way, every 49 years (the year of Jubilee) the land would be returned so the clan could regroup and get back on track. It was, therefore, a vital issue to both survival and influence to possess part of the new land. Zelophehad, however, had passed away without sons, which meant his daughters would be nomads. It was resolved quickly and they were given land but this was not the end of the story.
In Numbers 36, the issue rose again. Family members approached Moses with the following scenario, “Now suppose they marry men from other Israelite tribes; then their inheritance will be taken from our ancestral inheritance and added to that of the tribe they marry into . . . When the Year of Jubilee for the Israelites comes, their inheritance will be added to that of the tribe into which they marry, and their property will be taken from the tribal inheritance of our ancestors.” (Numbers 36:3-4)
This “problem” was created simply because they were all female, a decision in life over which they had no control. In response, God asked them to do something unusual. “They may marry anyone they please as long as they marry within their father’s tribal clan.” (v. 6) This certainly is not a general rule. It is not what God normally asks of people. It is, however, a good example of situations in life that force us to decide whether we will adjust to God’s sovereignty or foster a bad attitude. It would be understandable if these ladies were upset with this ruling. It is equally remarkable that they willingly made the adjustment.

Lord, give me the grace today to adjust to the way you made me.

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One Response

  1. Bill, great message! Right on bro!

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