Lord, why did you bring me all this way to rub dirt in my face?
Isn't this is a normal response to bad situations in our lives, right? This is a great line in the movie spoken by Harriett Tubman in the movie Harriett on Prime. I highly recommend watching. It is a good family movie.
There is this fun feature on my phone that brings up pictures taken years ago and then streams them all together. I can even pick the kind of music that I want to go along with it. It takes me back to a time when I often say, “Remember this,” or “Remember when.”
This past week God has challenged me in one big area, the remember whens. I had to share God’s story of my life in a small group setting and I found myself crying the tears again. I was not crying tears because I was reliving it or had not dealt with it. Afterwards, I thought and prayed through those emotions and realized I was crying those tears because I was in awe of what God has brought me through. I am out of the weeds of those situations so I can see more clearly where God was when I thought He was not present. I can say there were days I too thought God was rubbing dirt in my face and He was not.
But what if we are missing out on blessing by not looking back or going there? What if we are missing out on knowing and understanding our Heavenly Father in a deeper way? I know because I had to go back and talk about it and share how I realized what a big God I love and serve.
One of my favorite old testament scriptures is Deuteronomy 8. There are only 20 verses in Deut 8. In it, God is taking His Chosen people back to the days where they had the same words as Harriet, ”God why did you bring us all this way to rub dirt in our face?” They even said it more times than she did! HA! He is calling the Isrealite's to remember when He led them through the wilderness for 40 years. Yes you read that right, He led them. Why did he do that? Too humble and test them to see what was in their hearts. He humbled them by making them go hungry and then providing manna, a food that they have never known. This is what Deut. 8:2-10 says:
“Remember how the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness these forty years, to humble and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands. He humbled you, causing you to hunger and then feeding you with manna, which neither you nor your ancestors had known, to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord. Your clothes did not wear out and your feet did not swell during these forty years. Know then in your heart that as a man disciplines his son, so the Lord your God disciplines you.”
Any normal human will ask God questions when life is not jiving like we like it, planned it, or want it to go. We also start seeking answers and we want them NOW. We don’t want to go hungry or better yet we don’t want to wait for the answer, but He wants us to wait on him. To know Him better, too grapple with the situation we are currently in and still cling to Him and His goodness. And then once that happens manna appears or an answer appears in a form that we would have never ever imagined. It may not be an answer of abundance but it is just the perfect amount to help us sleep, or function, or manage that moment of life. Just like manna for the Isrealite's.
Let me close by saying, God is not rubbing dirt in your face, loved one. He is giving you a facial. He is refining you, He is exfoliating your heart by removing impurities, and dead qualities. He is trying to humble you.
Psalm 63:7-8 says, “For you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.”
We want to cling to something in times of need. We have to remember God is working in us and it is not completed until the day Jesus comes back (Philippians 1:6).