Numbers. Not the kind used in arithmetic. But the book of the Bible that gives the account of the numbering of the children of Israel. As I opened my Bible, I can't say I was especially excited to dive into this portion of scripture. The genealogies of the twelve tribes of Israel are given in great detail, complete with names that are sure to challenge any tongue on the planet. I took a sip of coffee, and no doubt, began slaughtering the names on the pages before me.
But hold on, it gets interesting. The Lord didn't stop at merely numbering the fighting men of Israel. He broke them down into groups, and gave each group a specific territory to occupy around his tabernacle. If you enjoy camping, this section was written just for you. Imagine you and your family along with 599,000 of your closest friends and their families all camping together! My, the evening sky must have been ablaze with all of those campfires! I wonder if they roasted any s'mores? It's been estimated that the campsite alone was well beyond twelve square miles. Can you picture it?
Once the Israelites were camped around His tabernacle, the Lord laid out the responsibilities of the Levites, those who were to minister in His house. At first glance, it may be difficult to identify with a huge group of foreigners setting up camp somewhere in a desert far, far away. To understand the importance each family played as they performed their role. But as the chapters of scripture came alive in my mind, I saw a God of order. A God who had a specific place for each tribe to dwell. A God who placed the tribes around a central focus, the tabernacle, so they'd be inspired to look to Him and make Him the center of their lives. A God of order, who was preparing them for the next task that lay ahead: conquering the promised land.
I can relate to order. I admit I'm a far cry from the most fastidious housekeeper, but I love it when my house is clean and orderly. There's just something about the saying, "A place for everything, and everything in its place." When the dishes are put away, and the clutter is picked up, it's easier to focus. I can begin concentrating on the next task the Lord has for me. When I'm in the place that God has called me to, and I'm focusing on Him, the book of Proverbs states, "Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established" (Proverbs 16:3; KJV).
Looking back on my life, I see the orderly steps God has planned for me. I can identify the love for reading and writing. The opportunities I've had to write articles for different publications. The not-so-coincidental meeting with a friend who encouraged me to start a blog. The writing classes to hone my skills. All part of my orderly God's plan, to take me one step closer to conquering the 'promised land' He has for me.
Do you see God as a God of order in your life? Have you made Him your central focus? Do you realize He's preparing you for an important task? Trust Him to order your steps to bring Him maximum glory!