Lately, while reading the familiar chapters about the Israelite’s wilderness journeys, I’ve tried to picture myself there with them. Do you ever imagine being with them and what it would be like in that time? Exciting, hard, terrifying, thrilling, and confusing all at the same time? Perhaps?
Read Numbers 9:15-23 and think about what it would be like to check each morning on the location of the cloud as you stepped out to gather your portion of manna.
Now on the day that the tabernacle was raised up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, the tent of the Testimony; from evening until morning it was above the tabernacle like the appearance of fire. So it was always: the cloud covered it by day and the appearance of fire by night. Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, after that the children of Israel would journey; and in the place where the cloud settled, there the children of Israel would pitch their tents. At the command of the Lord, the children of Israel would journey, and at the command of the Lord they would camp; as long as the cloud stayed above the tabernacle they remained encamped. Even when the cloud continued long, many days above the tabernacle, the children of Israel kept the charge of the Lord and did not journey. So it was, when the cloud was above the tabernacle a few days: according to the command of the Lord they would remain encamped, and according to the command of the Lord they would journey. So it was, when the cloud remained only from evening until morning: when the cloud was taken up in the morning, then they would journey; whether by day or by night, whenever the cloud was taken up, they would journey. Whether it was two days, a month, or a year that the cloud remained above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would remain encamped and not journey; but when it was taken up, they would journey. At the command of the Lord, they remained encamped, and at the command of the Lord they journeyed; they kept the charge of the Lord, at the command of the Lord by the hand of Moses.
Numbers 9:15-23 NKJV
Can you picture yourself traveling along with the Israelites? Each and every day meant waking up and not knowing if it would be time to pack up and move on or stay another day. It was all completely decided by God’s direct unmistakable leading.
Always ready to go and at the same time always ready to stay
Spending time with Jesus and the Word (gathering manna) is still the best way to start each day! We need to be watching and listening daily for what God is saying (looking for the cloud). Today we don’t follow a cloud or see the pillar of fire when we go to bed at night but we have the Holy Spirit.