Moses led the Israelites away from the Red Sea into the Desert of Shur. They traveled for three days in the desert but found no water. Then they came to Marah, where there was water, but they could not drink it because it was too bitter. (That is why the place was named Marah.) The people grumbled to Moses and asked, “What will we drink?” So Moses cried out to the Lord, and the Lord showed him a tree. When Moses threw the tree into the water, the water became good to drink. Exodus 15:22-25
God can turn the bitter into good. He can turn useless into useful. He can turn disgraced into gracious. It’s what he does best: God redeems.
God invites us into relationship with him. He continues to work on and in us as we choose him over and over again. As we deepen our trust in him and share more of our lives with him, he molds us into who he created us to be. We’re created in God’s image.
We don’t always have a good attitude about where we are or where we think God is. We get self-centered in our perspective so that we think we’re worse off than we are. We grumble, just as the Israelites grumbled about their living conditions. Keep in mind this was shortly after God helped them miraculously escape Pharaoh’s army. He guided and provided. They grumbled.
We’re not much different. Life isn’t the way we think it should be, and we grumble. Sometimes God lets us grumble for a while. Sometimes he develops us through patience and perseverance. Sometimes he brings someone godly into our lives to help us, like the Israelites and Moses. He cried out to the Lord, and God showed him a way to make the water good.
Who is making your life good right now? Not good by your own standards but good by God’s standards.
Who loves you with God’s love despite your grumblings? Who shows God’s patience and mercy to you through his or her own patience and mercy?
How are you making someone else’s life good? With whom are you being patient despite his or her grumblings? Show God’s mercy. After all, he shows you his mercy, turning bitterness into goodness when you allow him to do so.
Live It. Think about someone who is in your life right now who leads you away from a self-focus and grumblings and points you toward God’s goodness. Call, text, or write a note of appreciation.