Oh, those beloved speedbumps. We love them so much, we will drive completely around them, even though it doesn’t get us to our destination quicker. To be honest, we don’t like our lives being bumped, and not just while driving. Yet, those speedbumps exist to protect us and others from harm. Usually, we fail to appreciate them or what they accomplish in any way.

Much like driving, the Lord puts speedbumps into our lives. In Numbers 16, Koreh and some other leaders in Israel openly criticized Moses and claimed they had as much right to leading Israel as he did. We know how that ended. The earth opened up and ate a nice Koreh sandwich with some relatives and friends for a side dish. In addition, the Lord slew the 300 men who joined Koreh in challenging Moses and Aaron’s leadership. Israel then complained that Moses killed the people of the Lord. God responded by sending a plague into their midst and the extermination of all the people was only halted by Moses and Aaron’s prayers for God to be merciful.

When the dust cleared, the Lord instructed Moses in Numbers 17 to take a bunch of branches and inscribe on them the name of every family in Israel. Then, they would be placed in the Tabernacle overnight. In the morning, the rod that budded with flowers would prove which family God chose to be the line of the High Priest. Of course, Aaron’s rod budded. When this was known to all, God told Moses to put Aaron’s rod in the Tabernacle as a reminder forever of this day.

Call it a heavenly Bob’s barricade or a Jesus speedbump if you wish, but the point is clear. God never wanted to judge the people as he did in Numbers 16 again. So, he set this as an obstacle. To rebel against this ordination of God, you’d have to somehow deal with the miracle of Aaron’s rod.

Often in our lives God puts obstacles to keep us from getting in trouble or drawing His discipline upon us. Hebrews 10:29 says, “Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God…” I know there’s more to that verse, but did you notice that to incur God’s judgment we have to do so over “Jesus’ dead body” so to speak? Jesus told Paul, “It’s been hard for you to kick against the goads,” when he met him on the road of Damascus.

Our Maker doesn’t want to judge us or discipline us. And he puts so many things in our path to prevent us from taking a course of action that brings those upon us. So, what is your response to those obstacles? After God caused Aaron’s rod to bud, thus communicating His loving desire to not bring judgment upon Israel again, this is Israel’s response in Numbers 17:12-13. “Behold, we die, we perish, we all perish. Whosoever cometh any thing near unto the tabernacle of the LORD shall die: shall we be consumed with dying?” 

They got frustrated with God for the obstacle and accused Him of being unfair and harsh with them. Let’s not be unthankful that God loves us so much that He makes it hard for us to continue in disobedience 🙂 I’ve always said God has me on a short leash and I am so very thankful for that. I’m thankful God makes it hard for me to succeed in displeasing Him.

Have you taken some time to thank God for His lovingkindness in making it difficult for you when you’re not walking with Him? And if you are in the middle of that right now, how about turning around 🙂

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