May 25 – Balaam’s Donkey – Numbers 22
Balak, King of Moab, sent messengers to the prophet Balaam to request him to curse the Israelites. Balaam asked guidance from God. God told Balaam not to go. Balak sent another group of messengers with promises of great wealth if Balaam would come and curse the Israelites. God’s anger was kindled when Balaam decides to go meet with Balak. As Balaam is traveling with two of his servants, an angel of the Lord stands in the road with a sword in his hand. Neither Balaam nor his two servants could see this angel about to bring destruction on this traveling party. Balaam’s donkey did see the angel and refused to continue down the road three different times. Balaam whipped the donkey each time to force him down the road. After crushing Balaam’s foot against a wall along the road, and then collapsing under Balaam; the donkey had enough. The donkey speaks and asks Balaam for an explanation as to why he is being whipped. The humorous part of this story is when Balaam carries on a conversation with the donkey. The Lord opens Balaam’s eyes for him to see the angel of the Lord with the sword. Balaam realizes the close call he just had and the part that the donkey played in sparing his life. In this story we see God, once again, using anything necessary to get the attention of His servant. Just as supernatural as a talking donkey, God uses supernatural things in our lives to get our attention. Let’s not just keep whipping our “donkey” and ignoring God working in our lives. Let’s look for different ways God tries to get our attention this week. Whether it is to give us opportunities to praise and glorify Him, or opportunities to grow our faith and trust in Him.