I was taking a walk with my Riley Girl and wondering what I would read next. I don't have any new books or anything old that jumps out at me. Then I thought about Joshua and how much I love this book of the Bible. I like history and I like reading about it. I love the man Joshua. His unhesitant faith amazes me. I am reading through the New Testament in my morning reading and listening to the Daily Audio Bible in the evenings. I am so not auditory so listening to it is good for me because I have to pay attention or I will miss something. Honestly, I have to replay almost daily. Now I am taking on Joshua as well. I am no Bible scholar and may get things wrong along the way, but I'm going to give Joshua a try.
Joshua 1. The Message
The first thing that strikes me is God tells Joshua that Moses is dead and to get moving! One I think Joshua knew Moses was dead, but I don't think that is the point. Sometimes things we love die, good things, and we just kind of sit and sorrow over it. There is a time to sorrow, but we have to get going afterwards. My mom told me to let the death, sadness, dissappointment, whatever last 3 days and on the third day rise up like Jesus did. I almost laugh everytime this happens. I let myself have my "Friday" and "Saturday" but by "Sunday" I am able to rise up and move on. I think God was doing this with Joshua.
The next thing He says after telling him Moses is dead is "get going!" God had a plan, a job, a mission for Joshua and he needed to be at it. He had people to lead, rivers to cross, walls to walk around, giants to conquer. God reminds him of the promise of the land, tells him everywhere his feet go is theirs!
Next God tells him that He will be with him. He won't give up on him. God knows that Joshua will make mistakes. One mistake I think God knows Joshua can make is being afraid, feeling weak, losing courage. He tells him to be strong and courageous. I know for me the areas I have trouble in, being still, having fear, God speaks to me about often. He tells me to be still to have no fear. He knows what I need to hear, the areas I have weakness in and He reminds me He is with me always.
God also tells him to take the commands with him that Moses wrote down. To stay on track, not to look left or right. To mediate on them, day and night, to put them into practice. Then you'll get where you are going, then you will succeed. It is easy to hear the promises of God and start running toward them without a second thought, but when the struggles come and they will it is hard to keep on if I haven't spend time with God, in His word. I need to read, ponder, pray, and listen in order to move forward. Often I read some thing, and think "what did I just read?" I need to reread, to spend some time thinking deeply, giving it my full attention. I need to do that with the Word. Then I will get where God has told me to go; then I will succeed at what He has for me.
Once again God tells Joshua to be strong and have courage. Don't be timid! Seriously, that is not a word I would use to describe Joshua, me? yes, Joshau? no. But God told him to not be timid, so I guess he was. Once again God reassures him that He is with him every step of the way.
Joshua then goes to the men of Reuben, Gad and half of Manasseh and tells them to go with them across the river and to help their brothers to possess the land. I never really thought much about this, but he tells them to lead the others. He tells them to help their brothers until they find their place of rest and then they can go back to their land. Those who go before us, who have received God's promises have a job still to do. They are meant to lead those who are still on their promise land journey. They are meant to help them, stay with them until they have found their place of rest. Then they may go back and enjoy what God has given them.
In some ways I am expected to lead others who are on the path behind me. Now I have not reached my promised land so I also need to follow others, accept their help, look for them and to them. They aren't God, so I'm not replacing Him or saying that all I need to do is blindly follow, but I need to follow the ones God has put in my path.
These men responded to Joshua and said they would follow every command he gave, they even promised death to the one who wouldn't. Then they told Joshua to be strong and courageous. These men knew the man they were following. They knew he was obedient to God. I am sure they heard all about him and how he and Caleb believed when the other spies didn't. They knew he would be faithful to God, but they also knew he needed their encoragement.
I want to be more like Joshua. I want to hear God and obey, without hestitation. I want to lsisten when God promises to be with me and know it in my very being. I want to know I have week areas, but to know God knows them too and he will keep strengthing me to get going inspite of them. I want to lead who God tells me to and listen as they encourage me.
I am excited to read this book of the Bible and mediate on it and write about it. I pray the Holy Spirit will reveal more truth to me then I have ever seen before. I pray that I will be open and honest and share it. I want to be a "Yes, Lord" woman who walks in faith!