No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses. I will not leave you or forsake you. Joshua 1:5
The book of Joshua tells an incredible story. Just like the book of Exodus tells the story of redemption that began when the Israelites left Egypt, the book of Joshua tells the story of redemption that leads them into the Promised Land.
Joshua’s story resonates with me. He was just an average guy who became this amazing leader of the church. He didn’t receive his calling from an angel messenger, flaming bush or other divine and miraculous sign. He just knew this man (Moses), who knew the Lord. That man knew Joshua’s heart and called him to be a leader for God.
I wonder what was going through Joshua’s mind the day he was summoned by Moses. It would be like being summoned by the President of the United States or your bosses boss.
Moses then summoned Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and courageous, for you will go with this people into the land the Lord swore to give to their fathers. You will enable them to take possession of it. The Lord is the One who will go before you. He will be with you; He will not leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid or discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:7-8
It seems like Moses knew right away what would be going on in his head and heart because he reminded Joshua of several things:
- Be strong and courageous
- God is always with you. He has your back.
- Do not be afraid
- Do not be discouraged
When faced with new challenges that take us out of our comfort zone or a problem that seems as if it’s growing faster than we can climb, these reminders can bring strength and comfort. In fact, as I study this verse it’s a “right on time” reminder for me as I work to tackle the challenges of aging parents and the battle within myself of being torn between two cities. The need to be with my mom and dad and here with my husband and kids. However, when I’m still and quiet I can hear God whisper softly, “Allison, I’m with you and your parents. Do not be afraid or discouraged. Be strong and have courage. I am in every detail and working all things out for good. Trust in me. Lean on me and do not rely on your own strength, but on mine.”
We serve a God who uses sinners day after day to complete His perfect plan. He takes our imperfections and uses them to weave His story of love, redemption, and grace through this broken planet. Now that is an amazing God!
Do you find yourself in a place of fear or discouragement this week? If so, I’ll pray you are able to lean into God’s promise that He will never leave you or forsake you. That you will feel and grasp His great strength and courage for the situation you face. Please pray the same for me.