[bible:365 2013] Numbers 1-4

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Center – Charlie Hall

You’re the center of the universe
Everything was made in You Jesus
Breath of every living thing
Everyone was made for You

You hold everything together
You hold everything together

Christ be the center of our lives
Be the place we fix our eyes
Be the center of our lives

We lift our eyes to heaven
We wrap our lives around your life
We lift our eyes to heaven, to You

As I’m sitting here thinking of the second chapter of Numbers, this is the song that pops into my head.

In this chapter the LORD is directing Moses on how to organize the Israelites’ camp whenever they stop. He has Moses set up the tabernacle in the center of camp, with the Levites directly surrounding it, then lays out the rest of the tribes of Israel surrounding the tent of meeting. While there is definitely some significance there, the part that stood out the most to me came in verse 2:

They shall camp facing the tent of meeting on every side. – Numbers 2:2

So not only was the camp arranged with the tent of meeting in the center, all of Israel was to orient themselves facing the tabernacle. It was where they were to “fix their eyes,” if you will.

The tabernacle was where the presence of God dwelled.

The tabernacle was the center of the camp.

The tabernacle is where they were to orient themselves towards.

This has been a theme I’ve noticed consistently throughout the last few books as the presence of God has moved to dwell amongst the Israelites: they were to look to God for all direction. They looked to the presence of God to tell them when it was time to move on, and when it was time to camp (Exodus 40:36-38), and now, the LORD is ensuring that His presence is the center of their lives.

It’s amazing what a difference it makes in your life when you make Christ the center. One of the things I’ve been open about from the start is that I have struggled with consistency in centering my life around Christ daily, and I’ve noticed the effect it has over time: I become more easily depressed, more likely to compromise my beliefs, more likely to talk badly about others, and overall more likely to slip into old sin patterns. And I really do believe it is a daily thing: to daily make the choice to fix your eyes on Christ.

This struggle is a significant motivation behind this blog and the bible:365 project: to daily, consistently, make Christ the center of my life. It’s amazing what a difference it makes.

This is a year of trying again: recommitting to spending time with God daily through prayer, worship, and reading through the Bible. I haven’t been perfect, but it’s been an improvement. And isn’t that the best we can hope for? Nothing’s going to be perfect. But when this day is better than yesterday, that’s progress. Progress is good. And in that progress I’ve noticed I’m living a life more filled with joy than before, more filled with the Love of Christ, more aware of his presence, and knowing the peace that comes with it. It’s not perfect, but it’s better than before.

So, my encouragement to you is that making the choice to daily center your life on Christ is worth it; better today than yesterday is progress, and progress is good; there are others on this journey as well, and we can be here to lift each other up.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, [fixing our eyes on] Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God. -Hebrews 12:1-2

Have you struggled with making Christ the center of your life every day? What can we do to “fix our eyes on Christ?”

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One thought on “[bible:365 2013] Numbers 1-4

  1. So glad to hear that I’m not alone. I’m not perfect on a daily basis but man do I feel the difference when I am consistent. More joy, less depression. More patience, less selfishness. I was thinking, “Oh wouldn’t it be nice to just wake up and walk out of your tent and see the tabernacle? They had such a simple life.” The sad thing is, there’s a beautiful church right next door to my house! I pass it all the time but it has become just part of the landscape and I don’t stop and look at its beauty and what it holds within it. We clutter our lives up with so much that even if we have the presence of God right there, we can miss it.

    Your music reminds me of a big part of what I am missing in my daily time with God. It was so nice just to sit here and listen to the song taking in the words. We do it as part of Sunday worship. I need to incorporate it into my daily worship. So, I’m off to create a new playlist!

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