So why was the decision to move such a difficult one to make?
Reference: v.8 Every daughter who inherits land in any Israelite tribe must marry someone in her father’s tribal clan, so that all Israelites will possess the inheritance of their ancestors. (TNIV Bible)
Explore: A couple of years ago I was offered a job in a new part of Melbourne. I wrestled with the opportunity and found it was such a difficult decision to make. If I were to take the job I would have to totally relocate. I would live in a different suburb, go to different shops, attend a different church and work at making a different circle of friends. I could see that it was going to be challenging, but I was really keen to do it. So why was the decision to move such a difficult one to make? Because my decision wouldn’t just affect me, but would cause my family to go through all those changes as well. It would have been a much easier decision if I knew that my choice only impacted me.
Application: It’s important to recognize that our decisions have an impact on other people. If I choose to relax a bit at work, then it will impact my colleagues when they have to pick up the slack; if I choose not to cook tea at home, then it will impact my family as their routine changes so they can organize the meal; and if I choose not to let a car into the flow of traffic, then it will impact the driver by adding to their frustration and possibly delaying their travel time. Some of the effects on others may be slight, but our actions do impact others. When God allowed land to be allocated to a family of daughters they realized that the land would be lost to other tribes if the women were to marry outside their family. This was quite a significant, long-term impact on this tribe, so the women agreed not to marry outside their family. At times there are decisions that we need to make where it would be very easy to choose what is purely best for us. However, as I have read through the book of Numbers, it has become clear that God created us to be a part of a community. Our decisions, lifestyle and daily living does impact others, but we are encouraged to live in the way that honours God AND others.
Prayer: Lord, so often our natural instinct is to put ourselves first. Forgive us our sinful thoughts as we strive to put You first in every single decision that we make. Amen.
Who are the people in your life that are affected by your decisions?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.