I was reading in Numbers this morning and found a pattern for our lives. In Numbers 9:15-23 we read of the cloud and fire over the Tabernacle. I want to share two insights the Lord gave me in this passage.
First, the cloud and fire over the tabernacle were supernatural manifestations of God’s Spirit to help lead the people of God. They literally saw the cloud by day and fire by night. Why would we think today we do not need God’s supernatural manifestation to guide us into the day and night? Some reject God’s supernatural ways in favor of saying, “well today we have the word.” True, but they had the word of God through Moses. The only difference is that we have it written down and translated for us. We need God’s supernatural guidance today just as much as they did in Moses’ day. How do we receive this? The Holy Spirit brings God’s guidance to us and I personally believe the cloud and fire represents the Spirit in the days of the Tabernacle. The purpose of the cloud and fire was to: 1) remind the people of God’s presence; and 2) let them know when God was on the move. Today, the Holy Spirit indwells believers and reminds us of His presence in our lives and also is the One who tells us God is on the move in our lives. Now, I want to add that the Word of God is our check and balance to ensure we are hearing the Spirit correctly. When God’s Spirit prompts us, He will never tell us to do anything that is against the Word. Just like in Moses’ day, we must seek the Word of God on how to accomplish what we are to accomplish for the glory of Jesus.
Second, God reminded me in this passage in Numbers that every day the people woke up from their sleep and went outside of their tents to see what God was up to. Every day! It was a necessity. If the cloud had picked up, their day was going to be walking after God to the new place where He was taking them. If the cloud remained, they were to stay and rest keeping an eye upon when God would move. Why was this necessary? I believe God was teaching a couple of things. First, I believe He was training them to wake up looking for Him and to go to sleep looking for Him. Oh, how the church could be unstoppable if we gained this habit! Second, God was teaching them to rely upon His timing on when to move out an when to remain in place. I think we often get the right ideas but do not wait on God’s timing. The Israelites understood they were headed through the wilderness, but they were being trained to go through it at God’s pace.
Today, it’s not too late to stop and look to the place God dwells (your spirit if you are in Christ) and see where He is moving today. Is the Spirit moving in a new direction? Is He resting? What is the Spirit doing in your life today? God wants you to submit everything to Him through His Son Jesus in complete reliance upon the Spirit of His Son and wait for His direction. He will only lead you in victory if you are willing to listen and watch for His move in your life.