We are trying to find a time to get away for a few days up in the mountains and when I think about pitching my tent I always get a vision of a clear mountain stream surrounded by pine trees and snow capped peaks. But I saw a different picture in reading through Numbers for some background on a study I am working on. When I got to Chapter 2 I came to a dead stop at verse 2:
Num 2:2 “Everyone of the children of Israel shall camp by his own standard, beside the emblems of his father’s house; they shall camp some distance from the tabernacle of meeting. NKJV
As I have been spending a great deal of time with the Lord trying to fully understand the message He has given me for His bride I was not surprised at what the Holy Spirit said to me concerning my tent. It was something He told me a long time ago (according to my Bible it was August 18, 1991) that now makes a lot more sense.
Each of us (each member of the bride) needs to take up his or her place within the body of Christ. Yet that individual place, that individual calling, is never isolated from the “camp.” It is never isolated from our bridegroom or His body. There are no Lone Rangers in the bride and those who try to become one soon find out that they are easy pickings for the enemy.
Israel made a point of making the head of each family responsible for his family and in turn subject to his tribe, which was subject to Moses. We would do well to remember that as God doesn’t change, He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. The Holy Spirit has gifted each of us for our role as part of the body and we need to be fully about the business of fulfilling that calling. Our gift(s) resides in our own “tent” but we need to keep ourselves within the “camp” so that all the other “gifts” are available to support us and help us to fulfill our calling. The Lord made that very clear when He told Moses that Israel was to pitch it’s tent far off about the the tabernacle of the congregation shall they pitch.
Each of us has a territory in which the Lord has called us to pitch our tent (our gifts), but that tent is always to be pitched “about” the church. We have a calling and we have been gifted to fulfill that calling, God has given us a place to be and it will always be within sight (within reach) of the rest of the bride. So let’s be sure that we have pitched our tent where the Lord has directed and make sure that the Tabernacle (Jesus) and the other members of the bride are always in sight.
As the bride of Christ we have been given a message of hope and salvation for a lost and dying world. That’s why the Lord has given each of us our spot to pitch our tent… “far off about the tabernacle.” We have a calling to which we need to be obedient, and that’s why it is so important for us to be spending time with Jesus in the Holiest Place. Just pitching our tent isn’t enough. He has a mission for each of us and we need to fully understand what that mission is and what it entails.
My tent may be pitched alongside that stream but at the same time it better be in sight of the rest of the camp. Although I must admit that these days my tent has wheels under it and my wife is much happier.