My father-in-law used to decry what he considered his loss of memory after a cardiac surgery, in that he noticed he could no longer do some kind of complex mathematical computations in his head. Pity. I still have use my fingers for some single-digit addition, so I’d better never have heart trouble.
Needless to say, memory is not one of my strong suits. But compared to the Hebrews embarking on their desert sojourn, what with all the preceding miracles, even my memory might be a step above (but only maybe):
“Why did you make us leave Egypt and bring us here to this terrible place? This land has no grain, no figs, no grapes, no pomegranates, and no water to drink!”
Now, my initial response at this point, based on this people’s history to date, probably would have been to point the way back to Pharaoh’s front door.
“Wanna leave? Go that way. I’m done pleading your case, exhausting, sweating, and covering myself with cows’ blood and guts just so you don’t get turned into ashes.”
Moses and his side-kick brother, Aaron, however, had a much, much better idea:
“Moses and Aaron turned away from the people and went to the entrance of the Tabernacle, where they fell face down on the ground. Then the glorious presence of the LORD appeared to them, and the LORD said to Moses…”
Brilliant. Which speaks volumes to my sometimes hotheaded desire to just be done with someone’s bad attitude, someone’s immature and thoughtless disregard for all I’ve done for them, all the sacrifices I’ve made, all the stuff that’s been going on behind the scene they’re not even aware of so they have a chance at a better life.
Ummm…..kinda like God has done for me. At least that’s what pops up in my brain as I typed that last paragraph. Right. Got it. I wonder if that’s one of the reasons why Jesus had to just get away by Himself sometimes, to “turn away from the people” so to speak, so He could shut out the unreasoning, selfish, angry, hurtfulness of humanity and get a better grip on what His Father’s mission for Him really was. (Not a bad example to follow, BTW.)
As we read on in Moses’ story, he kind of missed it in the next section.
Thankfully, for our sake, Jesus got it right.
Numbers 20:5,6,7 Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.