1 After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: 2 “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.
Last week Tana Tuttle began to share with us practical truths from Joshua 1:1-9. We made our way through the first verse and a half with these highlights:
- Sometimes for us, like for the Israelites, God doesn’t speak because He has already spoken.
- God will always acknowledge the truth that needs to be faced.
- God never plans to leave us in the past; there is always a “now” word coming from God.
I love how Tana highlights the relevance of God’s Word is to each of us. I can’t wait to read more!
In Part 2 of 3, we begin mid verse 2, with “Now then…
The next word in our text is “you”. You. A very personal word. You want to know why? Because you are important to God. What you are going through is important to Him. God is very much into individuals. You are never an impersonal being to God. You are never overlooked, or pushed aside. You, your life—fearfully and wonderfully made, knit together in your mother’s womb (see Psalm 139)—is of utmost importance.
Yes, “you” in the text was referring to Joshua, but don’t miss that “you” also means you! You are just as important to God as Moses was, or Joshua.
Really? Really. Does that mean that you will have the same call as Moses or Joshua? No, but it does mean that the call you have is just as important. I’ll tell you why in just a bit, but for now:
Remember that God’s present (now) word is always addressed first to you, personally.
After the word, you, the very next words extends the “you” to “and all the people”. God is saying: “You are important (see above). You and your family, you and your friends, you and your church, you and your generation. You are included in what I am doing in their lives and they are included in what I am doing in your life.”
God is working out a plan, a purpose that we cannot see right now, but we are important in what is happening on this earth. What happens in your life affects others, and what happens in others’ lives affects your life.
God is going somewhere with whatever you’re going through!
That’s why you are important, and so are others around you. You are just as important as Moses or Joshua and God has planned accordingly.
We know Moses and Joshua cooperated with God. Will you? Will I? That’s the question before us. If we do not know and understand our importance to God and His plan, we will whittle away our lives and we, as well as others, will suffer.
What is God calling you to do? It is just as necessary to what God is doing as Moses and Joshua’s calls were for their generation.
God’s present (now) word will be addressed to you, personally, and expand to include the people around you.
“Prepare.” Or as the NIV says, “Get ready.”
On the surface, when Moses died, it looked like God had abandoned the Israelites, that He had taken something from them, something important, something vital.
The enemy of our souls will tell us, “Look what God took from you; if He really loved you He would not have let this happen. If He were a good God, He would not let you suffer. This is unfair. God obviously doesn’t care about you.”
Have you heard this in your ear like I have? You know by now that these are the enemy’s lies. God is not a taker, He is a giver, or as I like to say, “God is an exchanger.”
God may take something away, but He always gives something in exchange. You will never be left with a minus (see 1 Cor. 4:7 and Romans 8:32).
God was going to exchange 40 years of wilderness wandering for the land of milk and honey. The incredible thing is, those 40 wandering years included many good provisions and promises from God. But there was more to come.
You and I know the story. These people, of course, did not yet know that the land of milk and honey was right up ahead or have confidence that they’d ever reach it. They needed a time of preparation, an in-between time.
You and I must have a time of preparation also. The things that are in your life, that you would never choose, are a preparation time for what is up ahead. It is an in-between time, in between n-o-w and n-e-w.
God is sovereign over everything in your life, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Now, prepare. God is up to something you cannot see that will turn out good. This is for you—and for others.
Now is the time to be expectant, to put your hope in God, to let Him walk you through the preparation time to the next place in your journey.
In your present circumstance, your new normal, God desires that you prepare for where He is taking you, for He is up to something good in the midst of your life.
We’re out of space for this week! So, like the Israelites, we can use the time to “prepare” for where God is taking us, while we wait to hear more from Tana next time!)