Sunday, May 3, 2015

A Screeching Halt

So Miriam was shut up outside the camp for seven days, and the people did not move on until Miriam was received again. Numbers 12:15

Miriam's sin brought the entire nation of Israel to a screeching halt for seven days while God dealt with her and brought her back in line with His will. It must have been devastating for Miriam to realize she was the cause of an unscheduled stop.

How do I know presume to know what she was feeling? Because recently I discovered I'm a Miriam.

Have you ever said yes to something because you thought you should, or continued serving even though God was leading you in a different direction? In my zeal to serve God, I’d become prideful and thought I knew better than Him. I once again ran ahead of His will. I'd said yes to too many things and become a stumbling block to a ministry I love. 

For years I've known that trying to do too many things at once means I wouldn't be able to do them well. But I seem to be a slow learner, or at least someone with a poor memory. When I pay attention to the Holy Spirit, this misguided urge stays in check, but when I stray, life gets stressful . . . for everyone.

Fortunately, I had the opportunity make things right by turning over some of my responsibilities to those God had called to serve. And as I sat, listening to them express their joy at that opportunity, it hit me how selfish I'd been. Not only was I disobedient (bad enough) but I stood in the way of others who wanted to serve. In effect, I brought the whole thing to a screeching halt while God dealt with my disobedience.

It felt good to let go of the duties I’d disobediently taken up as mine, to once again align myself with God’s will and let Him be the only one in charge. As I relearn the lesson of listening, the stress is receding and the joy is returning.


  1. This is my story too. I remember saying Yes to something I clearly knew that God did not want me to do. It was not a bad thing. In Fact, it was a statewide leadership position. After serving a year in that position our family found ourselves moving back to our home state of RI to help a family member. He is teaching me obedience and reigning me in. He chooses where I serve not me.

  2. I've learned the hard way that sometimes when I say yes, I rob someone else of the joy to serve God.

  3. My wise sister-in-law once said, "We think it's good to do because it's for God." It might be wonderful but it might not be ours to do.

  4. It's so easy to do. It can happen to anyone.

  5. I'm a slow learner too. Thanks for your sharing your story, it's a nice reminder and I'm glad you got to see the other people's joy. What a gift:)