If we were Israel following Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, this thirty-first year anniversary would mean we had been in the desert, living in our tents, the whole history of our existence as a church! We’d still have nine more years of tent living before Moses got us to the border of the Promised Land. Thirty-one years might have seemed a long time to those wanderers in the desert, but for us, those years have swiftly passed.
Yet the message of the book of Numbers is not the looking back, but rather we read often that the camp “set forward.” Each anniversary we like to think like that. Rejoice in the good things our Lord has done, but more – set forward to what He still wants us to do in the future. As God said to Joshua after Israel had possessed the Promised Land, “There remaineth yet very much land to be possessed.” (Joshua 13:1) So, we want to “set forward” into our 32nd year! Happy anniversary!