Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Disqualified

"Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank." Numbers 20:11


Image result for disqualified trail runner picChina's Liang Jing crossed the finish line of the Vibram HK100 on Saturday in nine hours and 28 minutes. And while this appeared to be an incredible win and course record by three minutes, Jing's celebration was cut short when he was officially disqualified. You see, somewhere along the way, Liang grabbed a hiker's water bottle without permission and then threw another bottle away. And while you might say, "It was only water. What's the big deal?" The big deal is this... the rules clearly state that no "outside support" is allowed outside of the specified checkpoints and littering is never allowed. And although Jing apologized, race director, Janet Ng said: “We were very clear this year about the rules on support outside check points. It would not make sense to take anything but a strong position on this.”

It would be quite disheartening to work so hard only to be stripped of a victory for a grievance so small, wouldn't it? But that's exactly what happened to Moses too. As he was leading the Israelites through the desert to the promised land, he beseeched the Lord to provide them with the water they so desperately needed. And after the Lord clearly told Moses to speak to the rock and it would pour out water, "Moses raised his arm and struck the rock the rock twice with his staff" instead. And while the Lord did provide the water, Moses had disobeyed God's direct command and dishonored Him in the presence of the people. And for this, Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land. In other words, Moses was disqualified.

And while Moses' punishment may have seemed harsh in light of how small the offense appeared, consider that Moses was to be the leader and model for the entire nation. He was to set an example of what it meant to follow the Lord - completely and wholeheartedly - just as we are. And this small sin, if left unpunished, could have led to much larger ones that would have led the people astray. So may we be ever so careful to follow God’s commands in the exact way that God commands us that we may not be disqualified and forfeit the prize either.

Heavenly Father, thank You for the reminder that You want our complete and total obedience. Help us to remember that following only part of your commands is total disobedience deserving of punishment. Oh Lord, may we be a model and example to others of what it means to truly follow You. It's in your precious name we pray Jesus. Amen. 

Happy Running!!!

Trust and obey - Big Daddy Weave
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-LdHCuo5-Y