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Food for the Spirit
Tuesday, 28 February 2012
A Donkey's Point of View (Balaam's Story)
Now Playing: Umma23
Topic: Numbers 22:20-34



(NUMBERS 22:20-34)


    She winced as the staff came down once again on her my back. There was nothing to do but prepare for the next blow. Over and over she braced herself for each new strike.


    “What did I do to anger Master so?”  She asked herself. “There was no where to go so I had to lie down.”




   It had only been this morning that she had been chosen to take Balaam on this most important trip. Moab would be their destination, a place she had heard other donkeys talk about out in the pasture.


    She tried to contain her excitement, her feet shuffling in the dust as the servant adjusted the striped blanket her back. Master was allowing her to take him on his important trip to Moab. She knew it was important because all the donkeys, having come with these many men, were of the best upbringing. Unlike her, they had been trained for carrying royalty and their luggage.


   Long fuzzy ears and a soft black nose centered in a patch of white fur, were some of her best features. Her long eyelashes framed her eyes as if with eyeliner, completing her sweet face. Her plush coat had been made ready for her master to stroke. She was a handsome donkey, indeed.


   Their journey began. Master Balaam, perched on her back, chattered to whom ever he would, the important men riding their donkeys behind us. Master seemed very pleased to be going.


    She, contented because Master was comfortable, stepped gingerly so as to not jar him. Her joy was in pleasing Master.


    Hours passed by, almost boring, until they rounded a crook in the road. There before her stood the most beautiful Man she’d ever seen; His clothes, a bright, shining white; His face gentle, but determined; a sword held in His hand.

    He would not move from before her. She had to move around Him or risk dumping her Master in the dirt. She, protecting her Master from either a collision or a fall, quickly side-stepped into the field that skirted the road.


    Master didn’t seem to realize that she had protected him for he began to strike her with his staff. She veered back onto the road. In wanting to please her Master, she had just missed colliding into the Beautiful Man.


    “Master must have thought that I wanted to stop and eat,” She thought to herself. “I don’t want him to think I’m selfish. I’ll walk even more careful now, and show him I’m taking good care of him.”


    More hours passed by, almost boring, until the road, hedged in by short walls, led them passed beautiful vineyards; vines laden with luscious, purple grapes.


    The Beautiful Man appeared suddenly before them once again. This time there would be no room to get off the road. This time she would need to squeeze between the Beautiful Man and the wall.


    The Master’s foot became wedged between her stomach and the wall.


    Master let out a scream followed by many whacks on her rump with his staff. His words sounded angry and mean. She had hurt her Master, the very thing she had tried to prevent.


    “I have to be much gentler in my gait,” she thought. “I will make this up to him. I should be protecting him and yet I’m hurting him. How could I hurt my Master like that?”


    Once again, hours passed by, almost boring, until the road began to narrow; thick bushes and piles of rock funneled the road into just a few feet wide.


    Again the Beautiful Man appeared before them, only this time He stood in the only place that could be traveled. There was no room for her to veer left or right. She couldn’t go over or under Him.


    “How do I move forward and protect my Master at the same time?” She asked herself. “I have already slowed our pace by stepping into the field. I’ve crushed his foot into a wall. How do I keep him safe now?”


    Then she knew. She would simply lie down. Master would not fall, or get crushed or hurt.


    She stopped, folded her legs under herself, and gently lay on the road, not jarring

Master one bit.




    She winced as the staff came down once again on her back. There was nothing to do but prepare for the next blow. Over and over she braced herself for each new strike.


    “What did I do to anger Master so?” She asked herself. “There was no where to go so I had to lie down.”


    Her thoughts became very loud in her head. And then she heard her voice, like that of a human’s voice. This human voice came from her very own mouth. The God that created her had released her voice so that she could defend herself.


    “What did I do to you that caused you to hit me three times?” She spoke the Master’s language.


   Then he spoke back to her in words she understood.


    “You mocked me; made fun of me; made me look the fool to these important men.” Master Balaam told her. “If I had a sword, I’d kill you right now!”


    “I’ve been your donkey, the one you’ve ridden, ever since you bought me. Have I ever done this before?” She heard her human-voice say. “It’s not the usual thing I do, is it?”


    “No….,” Master said, as if something strange had just happened.


      Master’s eyes then grew round and large, his mouth dropping open, as he focused his attention on what was before them.


     The Beautiful Man loomed before them, the sword in His hand gleaming in the sun light. It was then that she realized Master had not been able to see The Beautiful Man until now. Master rolled off her back onto the dirt, his face to the earth.


    “Why did you hit the donkey three times?” Beautiful Man asked my Master. “I’ve come to stop you because I see you are reckless, over hasty, perverse and contrary. If it weren’t for your donkey, I would have killed you and she would have lived!”


    Master peeked up from the dirt and said, “I’ve sinned. I’ll turn around. I didn’t see you there and didn’t know you were trying to stop me.”


    Glancing over at her…his faithful, kind and merciful little donkey…Master smiled an apology, holding back fearful tears.


    “Go on with these men and do ONLY what I say, just as God told you before,” Beautiful Man said sternly.


    Master Balaam went on to do as God said; to bless Israel and not curse them.

    If not for the little donkey, Balaam would have been slain by the Beautiful Man before he could have completed his assignment. Little donkey saved her Master's life.


    God had opened Balaam's eyes to see how his little donkey had patiently brought him to where God wanted him to be. She had seen what he hadn't, and with loving care and a heart of a servant, she had protected him, even though he hurt her.


    I believe God opened both their eyes to see Jesus the Deliverer; the Beautiful Man.

I also believe that the kind and merciful, the ones with servant hearts, see Jesus first and hear Him loudest...even if they are little donkeys.


Posted by umma23 at 10:18 AM PST
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