Joshua 1:5-9 is full of blessings and encouragement. Go read them. I’ll wait.
Ok. I was right, right? Our church is doing this thing where we all meet mid-week and study through the same verses. I was doing my part-reading through this section in Joshua (one of my faves) when God did what he does. He revealed something to me through his words.
I realized I focus on the wrong part of this scripture and apply it in a way that suits me. We always want to jump to verse 9
“This is my command- be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Whew. That feels good. I’m good. You good. We all good.
Oh the blessings. The encouragement. We want the truth that God is with us WHEREVER we go! We want to put it on like a cozy blanket that fights off any threats.
We grasp this idea of “be strong. Do not be afraid or discouraged.” We wear this part like we are suiting up. Like Rambo when the dramatic music is playing, and we watch him load his boots with knives, his belt with grenades, and the camera does a close up on his chest as he straps rounds over his shoulders.
His final move? He’s ready for any battle when he ties his mangy piece of cloth around his head- it’s his bandana of business, if you will.
But while I know these phrases “be strong and courageous,” etc. are great battle cries- reminders that we stand on substance, verse 8 is where we get our battle plan.
Study this book.
Meditate on it day and night.
Obey EVERYTHING written in it.
ONLY then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.
Wait. Is this saying we don’t get those promises if we don’t do these things? (See me pointing?)
And. Yes. That’s exactly what these verses are telling us.
Doing these things is so much more than simply tying a scruffy strip of cloth to our foreheads. We are actually doing what Deuteronomy 6 says.
“Tie them to your hands & wear them on your forehead as reminders.”
“Them” is God’s commands- specifically Deuteronomy 6:5
“And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength.”
This is the ground which we are called to take. It’s already been given to us. Joshua 1:3 is written in past tense- have given us.
It’s happened. It’s ours.
So maybe we need to have less battle cries and more obedience. Less gearing up and more trust that we are who God says we are and HAVE what he says we have. The land.
It’s time to stop acting like we are waiting for everything to start and start acting like we serve THE Almighty.
What does he have for you today, friend? Do it in confidence that YOU were made for now. For this. And with God you have what it takes to complete it.
Get Nike with it and just do it.