Posts Tagged ‘cursed’

Getting out of Midian

This is not our destiny!

Midian is not our destiny!

There is a powerful story in Scripture about Moses running to the land of Midian. It happens after he kills an Egyptian who had abused one of his Hebrew brethren (Ex. 2:11-15). In this circumstance Moses expresses a common feeling… what most of us feel in the midst of injustice.

In verse 12 it states the problem… “He looked this way and then that; when he realized there was no one in sight, he killed the Egyptian and buried him in the sand”. The spirit of strife arose inside of Moses to such a degree that it blinded his heart… forsaking the command of God in regards to murder.

Choices are the fruit of a heart’s focus!

Raised an Egyptian and coming to grips with the Hebrew heartbeat was like standing in an intersection and not knowing which way to turn. Moses’ wrong choice released the confusion that resided in his heart and created an enormous backlash among his brethren. The next day he went out to find two Hebrew men fighting. He spoke to the man who started it: “Why are you hitting your neighbor?” The man shot back: “Who do you think you are, telling us what to do? Are you going to kill me the way you killed that Egyptian?” Then Moses panics… “oh no, word’s gotten out; people know about this”. Secrets are often difficult to shake free from. Pharaoh hears about it and tries to kill Moses, but Moses gets away to the land of Midian. He sits down by a well with his confusion and there receives the call to be the “hand” of deliverance for God’s people (Ex. 3:1-4).

Midian is not the place Moses chose to go…

But God would meet Him there. Interestingly the word Midian means “striving” or “habit” and the Midianites were the descendants of Ishmael, Abraham’s son from another season of bad choices. Oddly enough its very rare that one generation’s poor choices do not become a crucible for our life later, but that is another blog topic. Yet now, in order to escape punishment for killing the Egyptian, Moses runs away to Midian, a place of habitual strife. He finds himself face-to-face with… “himself”.

Sounds like God’s intervention…

Running away takes Moses to a burning bush… with a broken heart.  Moses became a stranger in a strange land, separated from his home and family… and he needed a new identity. It took many years after this incident for Moses to be ready to serve God. The good news is that Moses did trust God (Heb. 11:27) and leave Midian. Moses found the God who transforms our identity!

We must recognize the God who transforms us as quickly as possible and allow His priorities to shape our life choices. If not, we may find ourselves visiting the land of strife. Leaving Midian can only happen when we have felt the crushing reality of God’s intervention in our character. Yet it must happen if we expect God to use us, bless us, or prosper us.

Character transformation is the defining reality of what makes a leader attractive to those who follow.

When I find myself on edge, offended or bitter toward others, there is a good chance that I am hanging out in “Midian, the land of strife”. There are spiritual realities that effect my thought life, choices and behavior patterns. God takes us into places that test us and show us what resides within our hearts. He does this for our good, as His way of chastening His children.

God chastens those whom He loves and accepts! (Heb 12:4-11)

The Christian attitude toward anger and strife should be consistent with God’s heart. There is just no room for angry outbursts or strife ridden behavior in the processing of Christian relationships. We should call it sin and repent of it or we give place to confusion. Like Moses, we could wind up in the land of Midian until it gets burned out of us.

Here is what the Bible says: (Ps. 37:8)(Prov. 19:19)(Prov. 27:4)(Eccl. 7:9)(Gal. 5:19-20)(Eph. 4:31).

Living in Midian is like living next door to a volcano that only explodes once every couple of months. I believe many folks live in Midian, a land cursed by a spirit of strife and although the erruptions only occur every few months; life is lived in confusion and fear, waiting for when and how destructive the next outburst will be. This must not be our legacy, because it is most certainly not our destiny.

Getting out of Midian is as easy as recognizing the sinful behavior and repenting of it. Ask the Holy Spirit to deliver, then begin to rest upon the Truth that God is faithful to meet you in Midian with the power to transform your heart.

When Jesus Prayed

“And it came to pass in those days, that He went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” (Lk. 6:12)

There was nothing casual about these moments. Heaven gets pulled into the earth realm by Jesus. While engaged in His earthly ministry, the highest call was fellowship in prayer with Father. Frequently He spent the entire night. The One who has set Himself apart shows us where to find our strength.  And as His disciples, we must step into the example He has left us.

It Requires Our Attention:

In these moments we find His sorrow, frailty and surrender. He felt the power of the kingdoms of darkness in this world. He left the bitter atmospheres of humanity and sought out a familiar secret place. The Mount of Olives was His favorite place. Frequently, after the multitude had left Him for the night, He rested from the labors of the day. While the city was hushed in silence and His disciples had gone to sleep, His heartfelt pleadings would ascend to His Father from the rocky ridges of the Mount of Olives. I can imagine the sight of angels leaning in for assignments.

And Jesus prayed…

  • that His disciples might be kept from the evil influences which they would daily encounter in the world, and
  • that His own soul might be strengthened and braced for the duties and trials of the coming day.

All night…

  • while His followers were sleeping,
  • while the dew and dark of night fell deeply into dawn.

The example of Christ is left on record for His followers. Jesus was Himself the source of Kingdom blessing and strength. He could heal the sick and raise the dead. He commanded even the storm to be still, and it obeyed Him. He was unsullied with corruption, a stranger to sin; yet He endured agony which required help and support from His Father.

With all kinds of prayers…

  • with strong cries and tears,
  • with passion for His disciples and for this world,
  • identifying Himself with the needs, the weaknesses, and the failings which are common to humanity.

More than Words:

He was relentless as an intercessor, faithful to His mission and without equal in compassion and authority. Prayer for Jesus was to assume a position where He could carry what He did not deserve. He was bruised and crushed… carrying our infirmities. He was pierced and stripped, embracing our shame. He was spat upon, cursed and given vinegar to drink… all in the process of satisfying our needs. He made our parched souls… His thirst.

Christ, our Savior, showed us to His Father in every hour of personal distress! He came to the Mount of Olives, not for rest alone, but because it was His “wine press”, where He was laid down. His provision is more than just religious, more that just a story and even more than just an example. His prayer life is new wine for the thirsty.

When Jesus prayed heaven was touching earth… and earth was being offered a drink.