Soul Food

Do not lose focus, soldier on towards your promises

By Jeffery Murungweni: 3.1, Computer Science

What a title for the opening Wednesday chapel service, right? It is kind of weird to hear about soldiering on when we have just started a new academic year and are still fresh from the long vacation break we had. These were my same thoughts as Rev. Dr. Bishau’s                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  theme for preaching popped up on the screens. What made the opening of the scripture more intriguing and captivating was the scripture on which his sermon was based. It was just a single verse: Deuteronomy chapter 1, verse 1.

In this particular scripture, the Bible gives a brief mention of the places surrounding the camp of the Israelites as they overlooked the Promised Land. At first glance, one wouldn’t necessarily understand what the verse represented. Still, Rev. Dr. Bishau brought in a level of enlightenment that was quite spectacular for anyone within the audience. He started by explaining what each of the particular places listed in the verse meant and the significance of the position of the children of Israel at that specific time. Let us deeply dive into this verse as guided by the preacher.

The Reverend mentioned that the children of Israel wandered for about 38 years in the wilderness and then camped for an additional 2 years just before reaching the Promised Land. In the verse of the day, we encounter the Israelites while they are camping before the Promised Land. Moses was giving the Israelites a preview of the land that they were going to possess, and he knew that he was not going to be part of those that would make it to the land of milk and honey. Rev. Dr. Bishau mentioned how the Israelites were surrounded by rugged mountains on both sides of the camp, and in front of the camp was a swampy area. So a question then popped up: How would you have felt if you were an Israelite and you were seeing these inhospitable places around you and Moses, your leader, was telling you that the Promised Land is right beyond there?

This is synonymous with certain moments we go through in our lives. As Christians, there are so many trying moments we go through, yet we are reminded of the promises that God gave us. Sometimes, we are in such dire situations that we question whether these promises are real or not. Here is a good example: Imagine telling a sick person who is in the ICU that God is healing them. That person might think you’re crazy and might ask you, “Where is that God of yours whom you say is can heal me?” Maybe as you’re reading this, you’re recalling the moments you faced such similar situations, and today’s word of God is teaching us exactly that and how to handle it.

In this particular text, God is showing us that being His child does not imply that our lives are going to be flawless or perfect. That is why, in the entire Bible, we can never really account for who we can pinpoint to say he or she lived the perfect problem-free life. The children of Israel could see the land of promise, yet their immediate environment was in direct contrast to that promise. When we apply it to our own lives, we can see that we are faced with many challenges that seem to contradict the promises of God. Sometimes you may be going through a tough academic period, yet God promised you good grades.

This article is there to remind you that God is still with you in any situation you may be going through. His Word tells us about his truthful nature and how he is not a man who can lie. The greatest hero of faith, Abraham, is a testament to the faithfulness of God and His timing. May we never doubt or complain to the one who gives the promise when we are in trying circumstances. Faith is not built in times of comfort but in times of discouragement, and we use faith to remind us of the one in whom we put our trust, and that is God Most High. Never let your present situations blind you from seeing through the eyes of God and seeing His goodness, which He has prepared for you. Success, in whatever form you see it, is your end result. Enjoy the process that brings forth that success as you trust in God.