Recently we moved out of our apartment in Bushwick.
I had no clue how much work moving was…
We lived out of boxes for about two weeks:
“Babe where are my shoes?”
“Black ones in box #2, brown in Box #5”
Staring at 15 boxes in the living room, “I’m going to work barefoot.”
Finally moving day arrived.
This should be easy…
I had 6 guys helping me. Four hours later with one unhinged door, two cracks in the molding and three holes in the wall, we got the sofa out.
It took me 8 hours to move. People run marathons in less time.
Can you imagine the constant inconvenience of moving monthly, weekly or daily?
Just the idea of you settle, you unpack, you pack up, you move, you settle, unpack, pack up, move again…would drive me crazy.
Yet, for 40 years that’s how God’s people lived.
Israel Moved for 40 years
After Moses led the people out of Egypt, out of slavery, they were in the desert for 40 years. They lived in tents, they ate manna and quail.
God was preparing them for the Promised Land.
By day God’s presence was in the form of a cloud (Exodus 40). Whenever the cloud lifted, the people would set out on their journey following it. When the cloud moved, Israel moved.
Each morning Israel looked out of their tents to the cloud. This daily habit of looking up for direction is how God wants us to live.
When the cloud moves, you move. You’re busy in the bathroom and the cloud moves, or your kids don’t want to eat the manna and the cloud moves.
It couldn’t have been easy.
3 Groups of Levites
God chose the tribe of Levi, one of the 12 tribes of Israel, to assist the priests in the ministry.
Numbers 4 tells us that there were 3 major families. Each group had their specific tasks.
The Gershonites were responsible for carrying the curtains of the Tabernacle.
- The outer cover was made of durable leather.
- There were curtains for the entrance to the tent of meeting, courtyard curtains that surrounded the Tabernacle and altar and the curtains to the entrance of the courtyard.
They were also responsible for carrying the décor (the paint, wall paper, picture frames).
They received two wagons and 4 bulls for this task.
The Meranites carried the
- frames of the tabernacle,
- posts and based,
- tent pegs and
Four wagons and 8 bulls were allocated to them.
The Kohathites carried
- the Ark of the Covenant,
- the bronze altar, and
- other equipment used for sacrifices and worship.
But Moses did not give any to the Kohathites because they were to carry on their shoulders the holy things for which they were responsible (Numbers 7:9 KJV)
They didn’t receive any wagons or bulls to help them carry their load.
The Weight Of Ministry
The Kohathites felt the weight of the ministry on their shoulders.
When the cloud moved, they had to secure their families and simultaneously carry the sacred things of God on their shoulders.
Some scholars believed the ark weighed 300-400 pounds.
So, if the cloud moved 3 miles, they walked 3-4 miles with 100s of pounds on their shoulders.
They walked in the hot desert sun, sweating profusely. Under a dry heat, often without water, they felt the weight on their shoulders. With each step the weight got heavier and heavier…
While carrying the load, they probably worried about their families too.
“Is my son OK, is my daughter OK?
Is my wife managing without me?
Will serving God affect me in a negative way?”
Move with God’s Cloud
If we’re honest, that’s how it is when we walk with God.
You wake up early to go to work. You come home exhausted. The kids have school tomorrow, their homework isn’t done. When the weekend finally arrives, there are things to do. Sunday you serve at church, you have to be there early.
When you tithe or give sacrificially, you wonder, “Will I be able to take care of the bills?”
We feel the pinch of trying to manage our families and carrying the sacred things of God.
Moving when God moves isn’t easy, sometimes it’s a major sacrifice.
Yet, When you carry the things that weigh on God’s heart, He’ll carry the things that weigh on yours.
God will take care of you at your job.
Your kids will excel at school.
He will stretch your finances.
God will bless you in ways you couldn’t imagine
Why? Because when the cloud moves, you move.
I’m Here to Obey
Everyone else got one!
At no point does God say,
“I’m sorry for the discomfort. I didn’t know the sacred things weighed so much.
I’m sorry I didn’t know you back hurt or your shoulders are burning.
Take your time, the cloud won’t move till you’re good and ready.”
God never apologized to the Kohathites.
Numbers 7:9 refers to it as a responsibility, a service work.
The word Kohathites means to align oneself, to agree with.
In other words when God moved, no matter how hard the work, no matter the cost, they aligned themselves.
It was a privilege to carry the things of God on their shoulders.
God’s Cloud Is Preparing To MOVE!!!
The cloud over our cities and nations is preparing to move.
What does it mean? It means
- a new building for some churches,
- God rebuilding broken cities,
- people seeking refuge, and
- miracles accompanying the preaching of the Word.
It also means more
- families to help,
- broken marriages to counsel,
- children who need to be raised up,
- late nights serving,
- early mornings praying,
- fasting, and
- individuals to disciple.
It’s not going to be convenient. Some of you are going to feel the weight of the holy things on your shoulders.
- You will be required to give like never before.
- You’re going to pray like never before.
- Fasting is going to break chains like never before.
- You’re going to serve in the ministry like never before.
- You’re going to need more ushers, technicians, musicians, singers, kids’ workers, group leaders and youth leaders.
- You’re going to need more ministers who are ready to carry the sacred things of God.
We’re going to feel the pinch of serving.
As modern day Koathites we must stand in agreement to obey.
We are ready, we consider it a privilege.
We’re not told to do it; we get to do it!
We decree, “Where you move God, we move, and where you go, we go.”
Kohathites Ready to Cross Over
The next time Kohathites are mentioned is in Joshua Chapter 3.
God’s people are at the Jordan River, ready to cross over to the Promised Land….but the waters are at flood stage.
God tells Joshua to get the ones who carry the ark.
Call those guys who have no wagons, the ones who felt the weight of the ministry.
Take up the ark of the covenant and pass on ahead of the people. (Joshua 3:6 KJV)
They got the front row seats to the miracle!
They stepped into the river and it stopped flowing, making a clear path for the people of God to enter into the Promised Land.
Are you Ready to Move?
God is looking to expand, to take his Church to the next level.
What if God is calling you to be the forerunner, the catalyst, the vehicle by which he fulfills his promises in the life of others?
He is not only giving you a front row seat, God is inviting you to participate in the ministry.
Are you ready? Or
- Do you only see the weight of the ministry?
- Are you afraid of the weight, it’s too heavy?
- Are your eyes focused on the flood, and it’s hard to align yourself with the move of God?
God wants you to be part of the miracle, part of the vehicle to move his Kingdom into the future.
Is it possible that God is calling you to be a forerunner!!!
Is it possible God is calling you to go on ahead of the people and prepare the path for them to enter into the Promised Land of God?