October 25, 2009 – Devotional

I’ll tell you what I was thinking about today. I read that passage at the beginning of Joshua when finally the children of Israel were led into the promised land. I was thinking that their call into, was as miraculous as their call out of. God did not split the Red Sea so they could escape Egypt and flounder the rest of their lives in the wilderness. We all agree that our moment of Salvation, when He called us out of Egypt, was above and beyond what we ever deserved. If it ended there and we were spared from what we deserved, we would be happy and ask no more. But He called us out of the world because He wants to call us into a world, and a work, that He has set aside just for us. He wanted His people in the land He had promised. A land where they could effectively put their God on display to a godless world, and live a life that would bring Glory to their God and saviour. When it came to where they were supposed to be, and what they were supposed to be doing, God wanted there to be no question in their minds, or hearts, now or ever, that they had followed God. The Levites hoisted the chest onto their shoulders and began to march towards the River Jordan. Everyone watches as their feet come in contact with the water and immediately it pushes back to expose the obvious path God wants them to take. Those men march to what would have been the deepest part of that river and stand still holding the chest to wait patiently. Every Israelite had to walk past that chest as they made their way through the river and then up the banks on the far side. They would arrive without so much as the soles of their shoes wet from what should have been a muddy river bed. There was no other explanation for this experience; every one of them would come to the same conclusion as they passed the chest, this was none other then their great God at work. They all had to look at what represented God’s presence as they walked by, and without hesitation acknowledge the power of their God in bringing them into the promised land. Because God knew that time would bring about doubts, he had twelve men (one from each tribe) shoulder a rock from the river bed, carrying them up onto the river bank. They made a pile that scripture says is there to this day.
When things begin to get difficult; when everything is not falling into place, the way we think God’s things should; when the questions begin; when the miracle becomes a faint memory; when you find yourself doubting the events of the past; when your kids hear the story and look at you like you have six heads, go back to the river bank and look at the tangible evidence God has left for a memorial. Remember that you are where you are, and you are doing what you are doing because God, out of all of humanity, called you to this place, to do this work, to display Him to a lost world, and live a life, in the midst of absolute defilement, that brings joy to the heart of God. God is so kind. He knows the weakness of the flesh and our tendency to question and wonder and doubt. He knows that time often dulls and distorts our ability to believe what we saw with our own eyes and heard with our own ears and experienced with our own God. He leaves behind tangible evidence so that we can know. He calms our fears. He gives us the courage to push on, because He called us here and He gave us this work to do. God performed a miracle when He saved my soul, and took me out of Egypt. God continues to perform miracles, both small and big, as He works. And these miracles are the tangible memorial that He leaves for me on the river bank because He knows my weakness and He never wants me to doubt that He is here with me all the way and I, I am just following Him.

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