Taking Credit for God’s Work
Daily Bible Reading – Numbers 19,20; Psalm 28; Mark 5
Today’s Key Passage – Numbers 20:1-12
About ten years ago or so I was working in the corporate office of a company near where I lived. One day, I came up with an idea for an operational program that would change the way we ran operations and would ultimately save the company money. I slaved night and day for at least a month working on this project and setting all of the pieces in place to ensure a successful launch, and when everything was put together I presented the idea to my boss. A few weeks went by and I did not hear anything about the project, until one day I was sitting in a meeting with my boss, my boss’s boss, and several top executives from the company. During that meeting, my boss was asked about the department and she brought up the project I was working on. The only problem was that she presented the idea as if it was her own. I sat in the meeting listening as she took credit for the work I had done. Of course, I did not say anything during the meeting, but I can still remember how I felt that day. I was certainly angry, but more importantly I felt betrayed by what she had done.
Though I had not thought about that situation in years, when I read today’s key passage I immediately remembered how I felt that day. In our passage, we see that the Israelites were experiencing a drought. They were thirsty and were agitated and were complaining to Moses. Moses and Aaron went directly to God and asked for His help, and God told them to go back to the Israelites and to, “Speak to that rock before their eyes and it will pour out its water.” Instead of following God’s instructions what did Moses do? He went back to the Israelites, but instead of simply speaking to the rock Moses said, ““Listen, you rebels, must we bring you water out of this rock?” Then Moses raised his arm and struck the rock twice with his staff. Water gushed out, and the community and their livestock drank.” In essence, Moses took credit for God’s work. Moses acted as though he and Aaron had the power to bring water from the rock, when actually God was the one with that power. God saved the people from their thirst in the desert – Aaron and Moses were just his messengers. I can imagine that God felt the same way I felt ten years ago. He was angry and felt betrayed by what Moses had done, and punished him by not allowing Moses and Aaron to enter the Promised Land.
We can often be tempted to feel prideful about things that we did not actually make happen. We can be tempted to boast to others about the things we have done. In actuality, God deserves credit for all of the good things in our lives. The job you have and the amount of money you make are not due to your “hard work”, your education, or your experience. You have that job and that paycheck by the grace of God. That idea that I came up with so many years ago that I was so proud of at the time was not my own doing – that idea was a gift to me from God. He was working to make me successful, even though I did not know it at the time and was not giving Him any credit for His work. It is ironic that I felt so angry and betrayed that my boss took credit for my work while all the time I was taking credit for God’s work in every area of my life. While we are not called to put ourselves down or to be self-deprecating, we are called to be humble. We are called to acknowledge what God has done for us and what He continues to do for us daily. In Matthew 23:12, Jesus said, “For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Let us all humble ourselves today before the Lord, and remember that He is the one deserving of all the glory.
During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you? Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.
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Posted on February 26, 2014, in 04 - Numbers and tagged Bible, Blessings, Christian, Daily Bible, Daily Devotional, God, Humility, Jesus, Money, Questioning God, Religion. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.