Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
I think the first 9 verses of Joshua 1 are one of the best introductory commissions. This commission is a command, given by God to Joshua to be strong and courageous, rather than fearful or discouraged. Do you think there may have been some reservation, timidity or a disheartened soul on the part of Joshua?
Most of us read these 9 verses as if it’s a coaches motivational pep talk speech before the big game. Maybe the “commands” given by God were very much needed because Joshua was fearful, overwhelmed and discouraged. Remember, before Moses’ death, God told Moses and the Israelites they were going to rebel against God and leadership again. That rebellion would get into “my head and thoughts” if I were Joshua.
If I were Joshua, I would say NO real quickly to this assignment of leading God’s people into Canaan! No prayer and fasting time necessary. My answer would be “I sense the Lord leading me in a different direction in this season of my life…!” Who would want to lead a mega nation whose population included many obstinate rebels and idolaters?
I thank God for the responsive, wonderful, God fearing leadership, servants and people of Manoa! Seriously God! I’m sooooooooooooooooo blessed with the gift of being commissioned to shepherd and lead such a great church!!!!
I sense the word of the Lord for me is: “I’m commanding you Rod, to serve, live and lead outside of “your comfort zone.” It’s not just within the walls of “the church” that I’ve called you to pastor – it’s outside – where the rebellious, obstinate idolaters live. My church may not only be who you think it is (within the walls of a service) or where you think it is!”
OH GOD!!! WHAT? REALLY!? Ok Lord – Help me to be strong and courageous! To not be fearful or disobedient to Your command! Command…? Yes…I want to hear and heed…Your Command! I know You are with me…wherever I go – wherever You lead me. Thank You!