The whole Israelite community set out from the Desert of Sin, traveling from place to place as the LORD commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink. So they quarrelled with Moses and said, “Give us water to drink.”
Moses replied, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the LORD to the test?”
Exodus 17:2, NIV*
God had already given them a daily supply of manna in the desert. Now He patiently—and miraculously—provided water from a rock.
And he called the place Massah [testing] and Meribah [quarrelling] because the Israelites quarreled and because they tested the LORD saying, “Is the LORD among us or not?
Exodus 17:7, NIV*
The Israelites knew, better than we often do, that if God is present He can help. And they weren’t subject to our common fear that we’ve already asked too much and used up His gifts for us.
I think they feared abandonment. “If trouble hits, does that mean He left us?”
They knew they had nothing in themselves to convince Him to stay. They didn’t think about His character that keeps Him faithful to His commitments. Of His covenant that they would be His people and He would be their God.
We often need to be reminded of the same thing. As we persist in prayer, the proper attitude is not to nag for answers but to pray continually in thanksgiving and confidence, and keep alert to recognize the answers… especially if they come in small stages.
Father God, help me remember that You’re leading me. Help me trust Your character and Your promises and rely on You. Whatever my needs, I have Jesus. All I have to do is ask for help and be alert to recognize the answer. I understand it may well not come in the form I’d like, but I pray with confidence in Your perfect wisdom and timing.