Counting My Blessings

Take a Census

Thanksgiving. I need 10 places at the table. And 10 comfortable chairs for the inevitable food coma after dinner. Upstairs the couch seats four and I have a rocking chair. The couch downstairs seats three and the loveseat two more. I line the walls with kitchen chairs upstairs.


God has a sense of humor; we are studying Numbers in November. He commanded the Israelites to take a census of their families, too, Numbers 26:2.


Extended Families

We love our families – but if they turn from God – don’t follow!

Numbers 31:2, “Take full vengeance for the sons of Israel on the Midianites; afterward, you will be gathered to your people.” NASB


Moses’ wife was a Midianite. But the Midianite daughters seduced the Israelite sons and led them into idolatry, Numbers 25:1-3. God ordered the Israelites to be hostile to the Midianites, Numbers 25:16-18.

I don’t know if the second half of the verse brought Moses sadness or relief! He was 120 years old, Deuteronomy 34:7. He spent 40 years in Egypt as a prince and 40 years as a shepherd. The last 40 were leading the Israelites around the desert following the cloud.


Shelter, Water, Bread, Meat

Numbers 13:5, “Then the sons of Israel journeyed from Rameses and camped in Succoth.” NASB


“Succoth means booths, weavings, or to weave a protection. There are two places called Succoth in the Bible 1) Genesis 33:17, “And Jacob journeyed to Succoth and built for himself a house, …” and 2) Israel’s first camp out of Egypt, Exodus 12:37; 13:20.”


When they left Egypt, they went to Succoth and obtained shelter. You can’t go camping without a tent! They packed for 11 days and survived for 40 years.

The Lord provided water, Exodus 15:22-27, and daily bread (manna), Exodus 16:1-7, and meat, Exodus 16:8. The order is the opposite of Thanksgiving!



“Deuteronomy means ‘second law’ because in this book there is a renewing of the covenant and a repetition of the law. …Moses is recounting their history, the great and mighty acts of God on behalf of the nation; seeking to inspire hope, engender trust, and renew their courage. …”

Introduction to Deuteronomy
The Founder’s Bible
The Origin of the Dream of Freedom
p. 279


Deuteronomy 1:6, “The Lord our God spoke to us at Horeb, saying, ‘You have stayed long enough at this mountain.'” NASB


Mount Horeb or Sinai is where the Israelites met God. They received the Ten Commandments there. Moses got the instruction on building the tabernacle. They built it and saw God’s Spirit fill it. I would be tempted to stay there, too!

Deuteronomy 1:11, “May the Lord, the God of your fathers, increase you a thousand-fold more than you are and bless you, just as He has promised you!” NASB

Isaac was blessed a hundred-fold, Genesis 26:12. I can’t imagine receiving 1000 times the amount I planted! But to receive that increase they had to move into Canaan and conquer it.


I also learned:

  1. God keeps His promises, Numbers 23:19.
  2. Everyone who blesses Israel will be blessed, Numbers 24:9.
  3. Do not defile your land for God dwells with you, Numbers 35:34.
  4. God provided land for Esau, Moab, and Ammon, Deuteronomy 2:4-22.
  5. During the 40 years in the desert, they didn’t lack anything, Deuteronomy 2:7.
  6. God is fighting for me, Deuteronomy 3:22.
  7. Hold fast to the Lord, He keeps you alive, Deuteronomy 4:4.


“Unbelief puts our circumstances between us and God, faith puts God between us and our circumstances.”

F. B. Meyer


Join me in reading December’s chapters. I would love to hear what you learned in the comments section below!

©2009-2022 All Rights Reserved.

It’s the Little Things

I missed church and I felt so guilty! But I had a discharge from my eyes and nose.

Then I read Numbers 5:2-3 and my guilt evaporated.

Numbers 5:2-3, “…everyone having a discharge… 3) You shall send away both male and female; you shall send them outside the camp so that they will not defile their camp where I dwell in their midst.” NASB

I’m outside the assembly today. But instead of false guilt, God showed me a blessing in chapter 6.

24) “The Lord bless you, and keep you;

25) The Lord make His face shine on you, and be gracious to you;

26) The Lord lift up His countenance on you, and give you peace.” NASB


Ithamar Again!

Ithamar was in charge of the oxen and carts used to transport the tabernacle, Numbers 7:8. He went from counting items to directing thousands of men and animals.


Reflected Light

Tuesday, an hour before sunrise, it was light outside. It snowed and the lights from the street and houses reflected off of it. It was a peaceful winter scene…when viewed from my couch, in a robe, under a quilt!

I imagine the fire inside the cloud, Numbers 9:15, lit it up. The fire was not noticeable during the day and the cloud was not visible during the night.

I do know there is no man-made light that can compete with God’s light. It penetrates the darkest clouds!



God protects everyone. Many say they have a guardian angel, but it is God. He can remove His protection. That is what He did to the Canaanites, Numbers 14:9. They thought they could win against the Israelites but didn’t know they were already defeated.


Stand Back from Uprisings

Numbers 16:2, “And they rose up before Moses, together with some of the sons of Israel, two hundred and fifty leaders of the congregation, chosen in the assembly, men of renown.” NASB

When there is an uprising by the masses, led by men of renown but against God, step back. They will soon disappear, Numbers 16:25-33.

The same day my study verse was Isaiah 52:11, “Depart, depart, go out from there! Touch no unclean thing! Come out from it and be pure, you who carry the articles of the Lord’s house.” NIV

The Kohathites carried the articles of the Lord’s house. Some of the Kohathites rebelled.

Numbers 16:1, “Now Korah, the son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi with Dathan and Abiram, the sons of Eliab, and On the son of Peleth, sons of Reuben, took action.” NASB

Levi’s sons were Aaron, Moses, Gershom, Kohath, and Merari. Korah was Moses and Aaron’s great-nephew. Korah wanted to be like Eleazar and Ithamar. But he hung out with the sons of Reuben.

Reuben was the oldest son of Jacob who lost his birthright when he slept with one of his father’s wives, Genesis 35:22; 49:3-4. His descendants also had a problem with wanting what others had.

We need to choose our friends carefully.


God Goes Before Us

It was in the teens Friday with a high of 23 degrees. Bethany and I were going to Hobby Lobby. At midnight, I wondered if it was too cold to go.

I told her that I needed to wake up at four to write. God woke me up at four on the dot!

I looked at my watch and said, “We’re going!”

Then, I studied my verse of the day. Isaiah 52:12, “But you will not leave in haste or go in flight; for the Lord will go before you, the God of Israel will be your rear guard.” NIV

We quoted that verse all day and had a great day! I didn’t even buy anything at Hobby Lobby!

When God blesses you, no one can curse you, Numbers 22:12.


I Learned:

  1. When you are sick, stay out of the assembly.
  2. Do the little things and God will put you in charge of the big things!
  3. God’s light penetrates the darkest clouds.
  4. Everyone’s protection is from God and He can remove it!
  5. When there is an uprising of the masses, led by men of renown, step back!
  6. We will not leave quickly or have to run because God goes before us and guards behind us.
  7. When God blesses you, no one can curse you.

Join me in reading November’s chapters. I would love to hear what you learned in the comments section below!

©2009-2022 All Rights Reserved.

Holidays and Harvests

Did you know there are holidays, camping, and weeklong vacations in the Bible?

Leviticus 23:24-25, “Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘In the seventh month on the first of the month you shall have a rest, a reminder by blowing of trumpets, and holy convocation. 25) You shall not do any laborious work, but you shall present an offering by fire to the Lord.'” NASB


This day of rest reminds me of Independence Day. It’s at the beginning of the seventh month. Businesses are closed. Farmers come to town. Trumpets are blown in parades and fireworks light up the night sky.

God commanded the Israelites to rest. We should too.

Leviticus 23:34-35, “Speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘On the fourteenth of this seventh month is the Feast of Booths for seven days to the Lord. 25) On the first day is a holy convocation; you shall do no laborious work of any kind.'” NASB


The Feast of Booths, 23:34-43, is like a family vacation. You go to church on Sunday and rest. On Monday, you set up your booth, tent, or unpack in your hotel room, v. 40. You spend the week feasting with your family, v. 41. And end your vacation by worshipping the Lord in church, v. 39.

The Blessing of the Sixth Year

When we visited Israel, we saw some fallow fields because 2021 was the seventh year. Despite the empty fields, food was abundant.

Imagine, planting a garden in 2027 and having such a large harvest that it lasts until 2029! That is the blessing of God!

Leviticus 25:21, “Then I will so order My blessing for you in the sixth year that it will bring forth the crop for three years.” NASB


From Season to Season

Leviticus 26:5, “Indeed, your threshing will last for you until grape gathering, and grape gathering will last until sowing time. You will thus eat your food to the full and live securely in your land.” NASB


God promises we will not run out of food. Each season we eat the produce He provides and there is always enough to last until the next season.

Numbers Don’t Mean Counting

“Numbers means ‘in the wilderness.’ …In the book of Exodus, it took only forty hours to get the nation of Israel out of Egypt, but in the book of Numbers, it takes forty years to get Egypt out of Israel. …”

Introduction to the Book of Numbers
The Founder’s Bible
The Origin of the Dream of Freedom



Eleazar was responsible for the transportation of the oil for the light, the fragrant incense, the grain, the anointing oil, and all the furnishings inside the tabernacle. He directed the 2,750 men who carried those items, Numbers 4:16-20, 36.

Ithamar helped Aaron and Eleazar cover the holy things, 4:5-15. Then he directed the 5,830 men who transported the curtain panels, poles, and sockets, 4:28, 33, 40, 44. God put him over twice as many men as his brother, Eleazar.

To be great in God’s kingdom, learn to be the servant of all, Matthew 20:26-28.

Proverbs 12:2, “A good man will obtain favor from the Lord, …” NASB


I Learned

  1. Holidays and vacations are ordained by God.
  2. The crop in the sixth year will feed you for three years.
  3. Your food from one season will last until the next season.
  4. Numbers means “In the wilderness.”

Join me in reading November’s chapters. I would love to hear what you learned in the comments section below!

©2009-2022 All Rights Reserved.

God is in the Details

Willing to Do Anything

Aaron had four sons: Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. Nadab and Abihu went up to the mountain with Moses, Exodus 24:1. Ithamar and Eleazar were probably too young. But Ithamar loved God and His tabernacle. He was willing to do anything – including counting the inventory, Exodus 38:21.

Nadab and Abihu died after offering strange fire to the Lord, Leviticus 10:1-7. Eleazar became the High Priest after Aaron, Numbers 20:23-29. Ithamar served anonymously.

God is in the details. That is why he had Ithamar count everything in the tabernacle. God is interested in the details of our lives, too.


I am replacing my plastic dishes with glass and ceramic. My dining room table was covered with plasticware to give away. There was glassware that used to be displayed on the bookshelf and an accent lamp from the bathroom.

Thanksgiving is coming soon and I need to clear the table! Imagine my surprise when I read God’s direction to do just that!

Exodus 40:40, “You shall bring in the table and arrange what belongs on it; and you shall bring in the lampstand and mount its lamps.” NASB

I cleaned the accent lamp and put it back in the bathroom. David helped me box up the plasticware and I cleared away everything else. Now I can create a centerpiece for Thanksgiving!

I Have to Keep the Fires Burning

Leviticus 6:8, “…the fire on the altar is to be kept burning…” NASB

What can I do to keep the fire burning in my love for God? For David? For my family? For my friends? For my church?

Each Requirement is Linked to a Promise

The priests were consecrated on the eighth day, Leviticus 9:1-6. Male babies were circumcised on the eighth day, Leviticus 12:1-3.

Why were consecration and circumcision important? Because it was required to see the Glory of the Lord, Leviticus 9:6.

Sin and Guilt Offering

The priests took a portion of the offerings for his family. The family who offered the animal ate the rest. But the sin and guilt offering was given entirely to the priest, Leviticus 14:13. Sin and guilt take everything!

I Learned This Week

  1. I need to be willing to do the most menial tasks anonymously.
  2. I need to have on each surface only what belongs there. (Yes, I’m looking at you, piles of paper!)
  3. I have to keep the fire burning in my love for Jesus, David, my family, my friends, and my church.
  4. Consecration is required to see the Glory of God.
  5. Eczema would not have kept a man from serving as a priest in the tabernacle. He is ritualistically clean, Leviticus 13:38-39.
  6. Sin and guilt take everything.
  7. The High Priest took sweet incense into the Holy of Holies, Leviticus 16:12-13. Our prayers are like sweet incense before the Lord, Psalms 141:2.

Join me in reading November’s chapters. I would love to hear what you learned in the comments section below!

©2009-2022 All Rights Reserved.

The Ten Commandments: Frugalfish Translation

This was my birthday week. I found many guidelines for my next trip around the sun in the chapters we read.

The Ten Commandments: Frugalfish Translation

  1. Love God
  2. No competition
  3. Respect His Name
  4. Sunday = Rest Day
  5. Call your mother!
  6. Protect Life
  7. Sex is for spouses
  8. Honesty
  9. Truthfulness
  10. Contentedness

As the week went on, I read more instructions in Exodus

Do not follow the masses in doing evil, 23:2.

Do not kill the innocent, 23:7.

Do not take a bribe, 23:8.

Celebrate a feast three times a year, 23:14.

  1. Feast of Unleavened Bread, 23:15. (Easter)
  2. Feast of Harvests, 23:16. (Thanksgiving)
  3. Feast of Ingathering, 23:16. (Christmas Dinner)

Obey your guardian angel, [Your conscience], 23:20-21.

Serve God and He will bless your bread, and water; remove sickness; prevent miscarriages or barrenness; and He will fulfill the number of your days, 23:25-26.

God Confirmed My Calling

Exodus 29:1, “Now this is what you shall do to them to consecrate them to minister as priests to me: …” NASB

I was in my early twenties when our church held a special service to ordain and consecrate the members of the worship team. They anointed us with oil and the congregation prayed over us. Leading worship, with your voice or an instrument, is a ministry and calling.

What a wonderful reminder, on my birthday, of my special position in the church. God’s callings and election cannot be revoked, Romans 11:29.

I Learned More About God

Exodus 33:13, “Now therefore, I pray you, if I have found favor in your sight, let me know Your ways that I may know You, …” NASB

Exodus 34:6, “Then the Lord passed by in front of him and proclaimed, ‘The Lord, the Lord God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth.'” NASB

Join me in reading November’s chapters. I would love to hear what you learned in the comments section below!

©2009-2022 All Rights Reserved.