When it comes to seasons of life, we all look forward to a nice change. But, our perspective and mindset can turn a successful and healthy transition into a disaster. If all we do is say ‘I’m leaving here,’ but never realize we are going somewhere else, we can remain in the past.
Our approach to change can affect our experience. For example, spring is here, but many still feel the effects of winter due to cold nights and mornings. Others focus on the long hours of sunlight and warmer afternoons. If we see the warmer weather as a progression towards spring/summer, we make adjustments that allow us to enjoy the change.
Whether you are old or young, there will always be in times of change. Here, I want to examine how the Children of Israel had a choice, and the majority still had the mindset ‘we are leaving Egypt’ even centuries later. You can be in exile and still be going somewhere.
Leaving Egypt: You’ve Already Left
Most disciples of Christ continue to use the phrase: “we are leaving Egypt,” meaning that they are leaving the ways of the world and the thinking that goes with the old nature. The problem is most disciples are born again and receive teaching, become filled with the Holy Spirit, and thirty years later, they are still struggling with the same things they did before salvation.
If we keep thinking the same thing, we get the same results. When we are first saved, we are excited and have a new perspective. But, without proper discipling, prayer, and the Word, we will not grow. Without growth, we become stagnant and remain the way we were before we were born into the Kingdom.
The Children of Israel wandered for forty years, complaining about the situation. They mentioned going back to Egypt regularly. The Israelites desired to go to Egypt instead of relying on what God had for them long after the kingdom was established. They were supposed to go to Babylon for seventy years and return to Jerusalem.
They left Egypt, but that first generation perished because they did not have a healthy mindset of where they were going. They left Egypt physically, but their minds their hearts were always in Egypt. We can be like them. According to Paul the Apostle, we have moved on from elementary things of the Spirit to the meat, only to find ourselves still living in defeat.
We Are Going Home
The failure of the first generation was that they didn’t believe the report of the two spies. That was the result of a mind not focused on the promised home. They remembered what it was like in Egypt. They failed to remember God’s hand working for them, not against them. They saw their bondage as God’s abandonment instead of His preparation for their land of plenty.
Most disciples of Christ live life just like that. They are saved but never walk in victory. They desire gifts, healings, revival, and intimacy, and they experience God’s goodness in their lives. But, they lack much fruit. I.e., joy, peace, mercy, etc. They are not allowing the Holy Spirit to transform them.
Thus, most Christians live with a leaving Egypt behind mindset. They fail to see they are out of Egypt and never look towards home, the promises of God. Another problem is that many believers live with the mindset “when I die, I am going to heaven,” yet live defeated. That negates the work of the cross.
If we had a proper perspective of heaven, we would realize that we can enjoy the Kingdom lifestyle now. Abraham and those listed in Hebrews eleven were each looking for a city, the New Jerusalem. Joshua and Caleb (Moses did too, but was not allowed to go in) saw the promised land as their home. The rest failed to look past what they had to do to enjoy their new home.
Life in the kingdom is meant to be enjoyed now. We will live with Jesus here on the earth for 1,000 years in the next age. Beyond that, the New Jerusalem will come down, and the new heavens and new earth will be our permanent home. But why wait to live in victory? The fruit of the Holy Spirit is meant to be present now, not just in the age to come.
The exiles in Babylon soon forgot Jerusalem. It is ok to be at peace in exile, but we have to maintain the attitude that we are eventually going home. If Nehemiah had just said we are leaving exile, many would have wanted to stay without knowing where they were going.
Of course, Jerusalem was their goal, but living in exile for so long probably took the desire to go home out. So instead, they just wanted to leave, maybe go into the desert or go north or west where there were no Persians. Do you understand that leaving and going might be the same, but we need to be going!
It’s Time For A New Perspective
Whether you are entering a new profession, contemplating marriage, childbirth, or moving across town, these can be positive changes. However, they are a source of stress due to the work involved and the efforts required to go from point A to point B. Don’t let negative and anxious thoughts steal your joy.
The stress will soon be over if you persevere and go through the process. Remember, God has a plan, and He orders our steps. Pause and contemplate what God has promised you, and thank Him. It’s easy to focus on what we don’t have rather than look at what we have and where we are headed. But, if you are going somewhere, you will get there with a thankful and joyous heart. Before you know it, you will have gone through the necessary steps and will enjoy a new season.