Am I the only one who finds it hard to have courage in the midst of a battle or a problem? At times adversity, work struggles, relationships pretty much life in general ,I have found, requires a particular amount of courage and strategy just to make it through the day let a lone a lifetime. Prior to becoming a disciple for Jesus Christ I would run from person to person asking the infamous question, “What should I do now?” when problems descended upon me,and my faithful Christian friends, and family would respond, ever so gently, after listening to my problems,
” I will pray for you…” at the time I didn’t quite understand, and so all I could do was cry, because that was AKA for…there is nothing we or you can do except pray about it. It is humbling to know and accept that your hands are tied, and that there is nothing to do , physically, when life’s tragedies come hurdling towards you. I have come to understand now in my life that if one doesn’t know who God is or what all of his awesome resources could do for in and for your life it becomes even harder to hear someone say the phrase ‘I will pray for you.’
The tears that I would weep when I was ignorant to his magnanimous power, but now all I can do is worship him when I hear that truth why? because I know prayer works, and can work mightily in your life too if you choose to indulge in it on your road towards your battles; for my friend what I have learned along the way is that the battle has already been won!
Courage , nonetheless, is hard to muster up after you have been beat down by set backs and disappointments, but for many who desire to go to the next level in their lives courage and strength with a side order of confidence, are ingredients that will be needed on your journey to success. As I pondered about this I could not help but think of Joshua in the bible a man that grew up watching his predecessor Moses find courage, somehow, to deal with the Pharaoh of Egypt when he confronted him to free the Hebrew slaves, Joshua watched as Moses handled all the complaints along with all the grumbling and complaining of two million Hebrews as they crossed the desert, Joshua witnesses Moses part the Red Sea so that the Hebrews could cross on dry land while the the sea closed up when the Egyptian soldiers dared to follow after them. Joshua, I am sure, had many stories and experiences to draw from, for strength, when God decided to take Moses and appoint Joshua the leader over the Israelite’s after he died.
While Moses was alive we recognize that Joshua was one of the 12 spies that was sent to check out the land that God promised Abraham so long ago, and we also discover, in scripture, that Joshua is one of the two that came back declaring , along with Caleb, that the land could be taken. We see leadership and warrior qualities in Joshua right from the beginning, and so when he is appointed the next leader we , the reader, understand why, but upon Moses’ death Joshua had to be so scared for their leader was gone ,and now there was just him to carry on the baton of faith. Joshua had to wonder how did Moses do it all these years? How did Moses stand up under the pressure of leading over 2 million unruly Israelite’s to a land that they were scared to take over even though God had already promised it to them? How does a leader encourage, empower, impart his wisdom to a nation ,and to a people, that just doesn’t see the larger picture nor the vision that has been placed before him?It is this scripture, I believe, that gives us the answers to what we have been searching for…
“After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: “Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them–to the Israelites. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses.
As I was with Moses, so I will be with you: I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of Law depart from your mouth;meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” ( Joshua 1:1-3 & 1:5-9)
Praise God in all his glory for , according to this scripture, Moses never did any of these miraculous miracles on his own; it was Moses submitting to God’s will for him and this nation for God going before Moses , in the battle and uncertainty, was how Moses , ultimately, became so successful. I believe God new that Joshua was nervous, but God promises, in this transition, to be with him just like he promised Moses when he started on his journey so long ago. To hear from the mouth of God that he is indeed for you, and not against you had to be music to Joshua’s ears, but we also see that God asks something of the man who He would be behind; God asks that Joshua not only be courageous and strong but to obey all the laws that Moses gave him while the Lord was training him for this very position. God tells Joshua to never let the word of God depart from him mouth, and to meditate on it day and night so that his actions , his worship, and his praise to him would line up with all that he would say and do with the nation. God says to Joshua that it is then, and only then ,by your obedience to these instructions, that all will go well for you; and you will be successful just like my servant Moses.
Beloved a lot of people say that they are serving the Lord, but they have not committed to obeying him. God told Joshua not to let the laws Moses taught him depart from his mouth, and so I ask you ,beloved, have you done the same? After Joshua heard this from the Lord I suspect it was easier to be strong and courageous for the Lord said that he would never leave him nor forsake him, and with God for him who , can I ask, could be against him? Joshua goes on to do amazing things, and if you don’t believe me I challenge you to read it for yourself, but know that in your own life when you are faced with the mountains of fear that might come against you, the challenges that come with stepping out there and doing what has never been done before–if you serve the Lord with all your soul, heart, and mind and meditate on his word, day and night so that it is written on the tablet of your heart ,you too will line up with the will that God has for your life.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart lean not on your own understanding acknowledge Him in all your ways, and He will make your path straight. (Proverbs 3:5 &6)
God is the great physician, and when we are scared and not sure which way to turn I’d like to encourage you to turn to the word of God where you will find your healing, direction, courage, strength, and confidence to take on the next task God might have for you.Rest assured that God will do his part, but we as followers and lovers of his word must commit to doing our part because, God is for you and not against you and like Joshua God will also go before you to clear the way why? Because the battle has already been won…