“Now the leaders of the people settled in Jerusalem. The rest of the people cast lots to bring one out of every ten of them to live in Jerusalem, the holy city, while the remaining nine were to stay in their own towns.“NIV
Note that it is said of those who were to live in Jerusalem that they ‘should be determined by lot, the disposal whereof, all knew, was of the Lord’ Matthew Henry.
The ‘lot’ was a means of obtaining God’s guidance in the Old Testament era. The principle to emphasise is that God’s guidance can extend to the places where He wants us to live and serve. As I studied this chapter, and sought to turn it into prayer, I felt grateful that, since I left Bible College in 1978, I have had a strong sense of God’s Hand on my movements from one place to another. I am also aware of the Lord’s providential ordering of my parents’ movements, so that I came under the influences He intended in my formative years. In seeking God, I always want to know, ‘Where do you want us to be?’ Not just, ‘What do you want us to do?’ but ‘Where would you have us be?’ That remains the case to this day.
These words from Richard Foster’s excellent book on ‘Prayer’ seem relevant:
‘No teaching flowing out of the Sabbath principle is more important than the centrality of our resting in God. Instead of striving to make this or that happen, we learn trust in a heavenly Father who loves to give. This does not promote inactivity, but it does promote dependent activity. No longer do we take things into our own hands. Rather, we place all things into divine hands then act out of inner promptings’ (p.100).
Of course, there are other important factors involved in seeking guidance, but the thing I want to stress is that the leading of God can include where you are to live.
PRAYER: Lord teach me the way you would have me to go. I trust in you.