For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, that flow out of valleys and hills; a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey; a land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing; a land whose stones are iron and out of whose hills you can dig copper. When you have eaten and are full, then you shall bless the Lord your God for the good land which He has given you. Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, lest–when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage. (Deuteronomy 8:7-14)
Taking God For Granted
It is so easy to forget the many blessings God has given us as we seek our own desires and pleasures. Life has a way of channeling our hearts to dwell on our selfishness. The pride of life helps us see the carnal pleasures fulfilled to the enjoyment of self. Israel faced a monumental task as they prepared to enter the land promised for hundreds of years. The warnings of forgetting the Lord are just as relevant today as then. We live in a good land blessed with so many things and we lack very little. In the midst of the richness of this land, it is hard to remember all these blessings come from God. Our time is filled with the satisfaction of the ‘me’ person. He gives us so much and we return so little. The heart is lifted up and God is forgotten. Laid to forgotten memories are the times the Lord delivered us, protected us and guided us as we fill our lives with the carnal pleasures, lusts of the flesh and meaningless pursuits of a vapor called life.
Throughout the forty-year journey of Israel’s wanderings, God showed His power repeatedly testing the hearts of the people. As the new generation stood before Jordan, Moses admonishes them to enter the land of promise with a dedicated zeal to serve the Lord with all their hearts, minds and souls. He exhorted them to remember all the good things they were going to see came from the hand of God. His warning became their history as the nation prospered and forgot the Lord. The commandments, judgments and statues of the Lord were laid aside for the pleasures of life. Worship to God became a ritual to do for a while until they were able to return to their lives of fun, frolic and pleasures. The Lord was nowhere to be found and soon was forgotten totally. A warning lies here for the Christian.
Growing as a Christian is remembering all that God has done. His blessings are innumerable as both spiritual and physical. He gave His only begotten Son as the sacrifice of sin. What can we do to repay such a debt? There are so many physical blessings given by the hand of the Lord and how can we thank Him enough for all these things? Remembering the Lord is a daily reminder we serve Him with gratitude of heart and willingness to acknowledge that He reigns in our lives supreme. We cannot serve two masters. We will hate the one and love the other. Serving the Lord demands an allegiance that is single in its purpose. Allowing the distractions of life to dim our vision of God will only bring emptiness. Each day should be a day of praise to know that by the hand of God He has blessed us and protected us. He deserves every part of praise we can give Him because of all He continues to do for us – in spite of our rebellion. God is so good, so great, and so powerful. His mercy endures from time beginning and overwhelms all His people through His grace. Thank God today for all He has done. Count the many blessings His hand has wrought in our lives. Enjoy the rewards of His providential hand remembering all His love and praise Him. Do not take God for granted. He will be glorified.