One day after church, I was standing outside with two adults and a small child. As I was talking to one of the adults, the child asked me a question. I won’t repeat what he said, but let’s just say this child ‘called me out’. I was shocked, embarrassed and speechless.
I couldn’t believe he had just spoken to me that way, but what really made me mad was that the two adults standing by were his parents and they said nothing. They didn’t correct him nor did they apologize to me. So, what did I do? I accused the parents of talking about me in front of their child, but they both denied it.
I knew I was doing things that I shouldn’t have been doing, but I couldn’t figure out how this child knew what I was doing. I thought no one knew. I thought no one saw me, but the Lord opened the mouth of a child to open my eyes.
In Numbers 22, Balak, the king of Moab, saw what the Israelites did to the Amorites and he was afraid. He knew a man named Balaam and he knew that whoever Balaam blessed was blessed and whoever he cursed was cursed. He then sent his messengers (with money) to Balaam so that he might place a curse on the people that God called His people. Balaam told the men that he would talk to God and then tell them whatever God told him. God made it very clear to Balaam that the people Balak wanted to curse were blessed and he was not to go with Balak’s men.
The next day, Balaam told the men that God didn’t give him permission to go with them so Balak made a better offer and it sounded really good. Not only did he offer riches and honor, but he offered to do whatever Balaam asked. Balaam knew what God said the first time, but he went back to God concerning the same thing to see if He would change His mind.
God told Balaam to go with the men if they called him the following morning, but when Balaam went with Balak’s men, God became angry. I don’t believe God would tell him to go and then be angry because he went. Maybe it wasn’t about who Balaam went with, but about why he went with them. In 2 Peter 2:15, Balaam is described as a man who loved the wages of unrighteousness (wrongdoing; wickedness; doing harm).
While Balaam was traveling, the donkey saw the angel of the Lord standing in the way. The angel drew his sword to kill Balaam three times, but each time the donkey protected him. Balaam beat his donkey each time because he couldn’t see what his donkey saw and he didn’t understand what she was doing. But after the third beating, the Lord opened the mouth of the donkey and then He opened Balaam’s eyes.
The reason why God used a child that day was because when He spoke to me, I wouldn’t listen to Him. He used adults, but I wouldn’t listen to them so He used someone that I least expected. He used someone who I didn’t think He would use. Because I refused to put away childish things, He used a child to speak to a child (me). It may have been a little boy’s mouth, but it was God’s words.
God saw what I couldn’t see. He saw me going in the wrong direction and He knew the way I was going would have either killed me or destroyed me. Yes, Balaam’s foot was crushed against a wall along the way, but he lived to repent for the things he had done. He was given another chance and so was I.
I wanted to discipline that child the same way Balaam disciplined his donkey, but it wasn’t the child that needed rebuke.
It was me.