Earlier this week I had a chance to chat for a while with a friend who is also reading through Bible as part of the 66 in 52 challenge. We were supposed to meet with our Life Group through church but we were the only two who showed up. Instead of spending our time in Ephesians we found ourselves sharing what we had been learning through the first 6 books of the Bible so far.
One thing we found ourselves reflecting on was how overwhelming it must have been for both Moses and Joshua to lead. At the time of the last census there were hundreds of thousands of men over the age of 20 which indicates likely at least a couple million people when you add in women and children. As we start the book of Joshua we’re seeing another generation which means potentially even more people. I can’t even fathom trying to lead that many people. It’s one thing to “lead” in the sense that a mayor of a large city might “lead” that many people, but Moses and Joshua were LITERALLY leading people from one place to another. As my friend put it, “Some days it’s hard enough just to lead my FT Kids small group, I can’t imagine trying to lead millions”.
It is no wonder that God repeats this message to Joshua over and over throughout his life:
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. I will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)
While that message stood out, there was another verse in this book that I just can’t stop thinking about. It comes later in the book as the people are beginning to settle into Canaan. The name “Promised Land” gains even more meaning as I read this truth:
“The Lord promised to do many good things for Israel, and He kept His promise every time.” (Joshua 21:45; emphasis added)
We serve a Promise Keeper. He is faithful and good. He is powerful and mighty. He is loving and compassionate. He is just and merciful. HE KEEPS HIS PROMISES EVERY TIME!
When I remember these truths I am empowered to live bold and to serve even in hard situations. Whether God calls me to lead millions like Joshua or shovel snow for my neighbor, I can be obedient because I serve One who keeps His promises 100% of the time. Jen Hatmaker once said it this way:
“It is safe to be faithful to a faithful God.”
One of my favorite things to do to help hide God’s Word in my heart is to personalize it. This is a fun verse to do that with. Go ahead and replace your name for “Israel” and speak this truth to your heart today.
“The Lord promised to do many good things for Rebekah,
and He kept His promise every time.”
Amen! Let it be so! May we be strong and take courage without fear for whatever God is calling us to this week. He promises to go with you and He never fails!