While Everything Looks So Bright
Life looks rosy to many people. Their work is fulfilling. Their houses or apartments do not need repair. Their bank accounts show surpluses. Family members are enjoying good health. Friends are loyal. All is well. However, good times can be dangerous. The comforts and pleasures of this world seem to continue with few setbacks and become more important than God. As a result, we give God little or no place in our thoughts. Prosperity can quickly lead to indifference and spiritual laziness.
God knew this would happen to Israel when the entered the promised land. Therefore, He warned them not to forget the source of their blessings in Deuteronomy 6:10-19. Here is what God said to them, which should ring loud in our ears today:
- Fear the Lord (v. 13).
- Serve Him (v. 13).
- Honor His name (v. 13).
- Do not go after other gods (v. 14).
- God wanted their reverence alone (v. 15).
- Do not tempt the Lord (v. 16).
- Keep the commandments (v. 17).
- Do what is right and good (v. 18).
Joshua petitioned Israel to serve God as he and his house would (Joshua 24:15). Israel gave a firm commitment not to go after any other God. They said, “Far be it from us that we should forsake Jehovah, to serve other gods” (v. 16). They knew what God had done for them, but what they saw and received in the new land caused them to lose sight of the One who brought them there (Judges 2:10-15).
It is not uncommon for religious zeal and commitment to decline in prosperous times. If we will learn from Israel’s experience and heed the Lord’s instruction, we will not duplicate the same consequences which happened to them. Take caution. Our prosperity may be a greater test of our character than poverty. Be careful not to forget the Lord, especially when all looks bright!