Wednesday, March 11, 2009

"If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land ..."

I think it is safe to assume that most of us know the story of Moses and the Israelites. Many have watched Charlton Heston lead the Hebrew slaves across the Red Sea on dry ground with the Pharoah's chariots closing in from behind. We've seen Moses standing at Mt. Sinai holding the stone tablets etched with God's ten commandments. But there is lot more to the story. Yes, the Lord delivered His people from the bondage of Egypt but they were not yet willing to free their minds from bondage. God promised to make Israel His chosen people and give them a promised land "which flows with milk and honey". He performed miracle after miracle before them and provided their every need from the moment they departed Egypt. All the while they worried and complained and fretted and fussed. But the saddest moment came when they were about to cross over to the Promised Land. The Lord told Moses to "Send men to spy out the land of Canaan...". They were instructed to basically scout the land and bring back a report along with samples of the crops growing there. So for forty days 12 men explored Canaan and when they returned they reported that "It truly flows with milk and honey..." and they brought evidence of the bountiful crops growing there. However, of the 12 scouts, 10 declared "We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we." Only Joshua and Caleb reported differently. They "tore their clothes; and they spoke to all the congregation of the children of Israel, saying ' The land we passed through to spy out is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us, a land that flows with milk and honey.' " Joshua and Caleb were not super saints. They were ordinary guys just like the other 10. The difference was in their focus. The 10 were, like so many of us, focused on the problem at hand, a land full of giants who looked like they could whip 'em! But Joshua and Caleb looked beyond the problem to the ultimate problem solver...GOD! They were not stupid. They knew that they had no chance against the people of Canaan, but they knew God had their backs! They remembered all the miracles they had seen since they left Egypt. They remembered how God had provided their every need. They knew He would not desert them now. The sad part of the story is that the doubt and unbelief of the Isrealites cost them dearly. God sent them wandering through the desert for another 40 years. God promised them that Joshua and Caleb would be the only ones of their generation to enter the Promised Land.

As most of you know the news is littered with stories of Mexico and border towns and drug cartels. Many of you have voiced your concerns to us and admittedly we have had some moments of fear and doubt. But we are not going to be one of "the 10". We "know whom [we ]have believed and [are] convinced that He is able to guard what [we] have entrusted to Him for that day." Our God is not surprised by recent happenings in Mexico. We can have faith and trust that He who called us to this goes ahead of us and takes care of every detail. We can't choose to trust Him in some areas and not in others. We are not oblivious and we do not have our heads in the sand, we just choose to focus on the Problem Solver and not the problem.

Looking ever to the cross,
The Boyles


Anonymous said...

God started taking care of these details long before you were ever born. You chose to heed that calling and follow His lead. As you said, He won't take you any where He hasn't already gone and prepared for you. And the blessings keep flowing. I pray continuously for you and your safety no matter where you live. I love you and I am so proud of you both. Mom

Anonymous said...

God bless you guys on this big transition. We did it 6 years ago and have never looked back. I always tell people that being a missionary is the toughest thing anything could ever be but also the most rewarding. We're praying for you guys - Mexico is ripe and God is doing some amazing things here. It's nice to see some fellow North Carolinians come aboard! Dios les bendiga en este tiempo de gran cambio.

Greg in Monterrey

jbm5510 said...

Brad, Ann-Marie and Boys,
Hope all is going well and that the Lord is already begun to open doors of opportunities for ya'll to minister to those in your new community. Bev and I pray for you guys regularly and we are grateful to be able to call ya'll our friends!!!
Press On,
Rev. jeremy Mahaffey (Psalm 115:1)