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God calls us to look toward Him

Gina Hawkins • Jun 5, 2020 at 11:00 AM

Editor’s Note: With so many churches in our area having to suspend worship services during the coronavirus pandemic, we are asking local pastors to partner with us in bringing a daily message of hope and comfort to readers during this difficult time.

I’m part of an online group reading through the book of Exodus. The Israelites are intriguing because we see how the Lord is transforming them right before our eyes. Reading through their journey, I have realized how relatable they are. The Israelites are in a place where we often end up, frustrated by our current circumstances and unable to see past them. That’s the natural response to navigating challenges. A diagnosis. A lost job. A struggling marriage. Whatever the circumstance, it’s hard to focus on much else when you are navigating things that threaten to devastate you. The Israelites don’t have food or water ... things they need to survive. That’s a big deal. Their entire world has been turned upside-down. I would imagine it was hard for them to catch their equilibrium as everything kept changing so quickly.

During a season like we are navigating, it’s easy for us to feel just like the Israelites. But God calls us to look toward Him with the eyes of faith in every circumstance. God is calling us to anchor into His Word and trust in His goodness. He is teaching us to look beyond the natural and pull His Words, His provision and His promises into our daily circumstances. Isaiah 58:11 says, “The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”

My family has been hiking over the last 10 weeks, usually on well-worn paths. If I were to move off the trail and try to create a new path, I would get scratched up, hit in the face with branches and I’m sure I would stumble a few times. I would have to extend a lot of energy cutting a path for those behind me. Forging new territory is hard. It takes work and effort, sometimes walking blind, not knowing where to step next. The person out front tackles all of the unexpected surprises, learns how to navigate the terrain, and alerts those behind of upcoming pitfalls.

The more I think about this season, the more I believe God is forging new territory in us. The Lord is transforming us, and I believe what He is doing in us will set the stage for what He will be doing through us for generations to come!

Gina Hawkins is executive pastor at Christ Fellowship in Kingsport.

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