What Are You Waiting For?

Joshua 18 & Proverbs 18

Chapter 18 of Joshua continues with the land division process for the final seven of the twelve tribes.  BAM!  Joshua hits them right between the eyes with his question of What Are You Waiting For?, as he charges the tribes to go get what God has given them!  I love the different ways this question is asked in the different versions of verse 3:

  • How long are ye slack…King James
  • How long will you put off…English Standard
  • How long will you wait…New International

We do not know WHY they’re slack – or HOW LONG they planned to put it off.  We do know that Joshua doesn’t mince words and clearly he wanted them to get a move on it.  I wonder if their reasons for waiting are much like mine?

  • Comfortable – were they cozy in their current stomping grounds and life was going along okay – why shake up the apple cart?
  • Fearful – were they concerned about some of the current inhabitants of the land and wanted to avoid conflict?
  • Doubting – did they question if the Lord REALLY intended this land for them? Really, God?  THIS land, for US, right NOW?
  • Unsure to Start – maybe they were ready and willing, but genuinely didn’t know WHAT to do first. Were they waiting around for someone to give them their marching orders?

What has the Lord given you that you need to take hold of? Do you have a gift or talent ready to be used for His Kingdom? Has He put a promise in your heart that you need to BELIEVE today?  Does He have something that will bring you much joy and delight?

I can think of a specific time in my life when God put it on my heart to take the next big step in healing a relationship.  While I felt God calling me to this deeper level of healing, it was definitely uncomfortable and didn’t feel like the easiest road.  In addition to the doubts I had about myself and if this was even possible, I also didn’t know HOW or WHAT to do FIRST.

When we are called to a purpose or given something to take hold of, God doesn’t promise it to be easy and without trials.  He promises to be WITH US through it. He will guide us – sometimes right through the center of a mess, that brings us to a deeper reliance and rest in Him. He will surround us with His presence when we do not know what to do.  He will place His Word on our heart that will speak to us. He will send brothers and sisters to minister to us and share wisdom.

I love how Joshua sends out 3 men from each tribe to do the survey of the land so he can assign the 7 parts for the 7 remaining tribes.  What great wisdom! Parents have experienced this with kids – they’re more likely to split a cookie evenly when they know someone else will be choosing who gets which half.  Twenty-one sets of eyes are better than seven. I wonder how many of Joshua’s decisions were impacted by the gained wisdom from the decades spent with Moses. In addition to the Holy Spirit and the Living Word, God uses His people to pass down wisdom to future generations.

Proverbs 18 is full of challenges for us seek wisdom and understanding before taking action and opening our mouths.

He that separateth himself seeketh his own desire,
And rageth against all sound wisdom.
A fool hath no delight in understanding,
But only that his heart may reveal itself.
A fool’s mouth is his destruction,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.
The words of a whisperer are as dainty morsels,
And they go down into the innermost parts.
13 He that giveth answer before he heareth,
It is folly and shame unto him.
15The heart of the prudent getteth knowledge;
And the ear of the wise seeketh knowledge.

Just like Moses to Joshua, and Joshua to the Israelites, God has surrounded me with wisdom-sharing people,  especially when I needed it.  At an early age, I had a mentor counsel me (drill into me) the importance of seeking wisdom, staying coachable and ‘easy to help’.  He taught me to proactively seek  feedback and surround myself with experienced Godly people. Over the years,  I’ve leaned on this huge life lesson.

Back to Joshua’s original question for us: What are we waiting for? When will we take hold of what God has for us? Let’s move forward with wisdom!

Thank You Lord, for your gifts. Thank you for making Your wisdom available to all of us.  Help us to seek wisdom through Your Living Word and surround us with believers to point us to You.  Amen.

Grace Through Faith

Happy New Year Everyone,

How is day two of those New Year Resolution’s going? How are we pursuing a closeness to God for 2018? As we reflect on 2017 I think about what an amazing walk we have journeyed together through in bible journal and our lives as we walked through the New Testament and Psalms.  This year as we start in the Old Testament and Proverbs I’m grateful for the message of faith by Rahab in Joshua and the wisdom of the Proverbs in providing instructions and a handbook for living God focused days.

Take notes as you read through today’s reading of Joshua 2 and Proverbs 2

 11 And as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for the Lord your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath. Joshua 2:11

Rahab was a known prostitute, and God’s perfect plan put the two spies right in her house.  When the king comes in search of the men Rahab tells them they are not there. In these moments Rahab put her life, and the life of her family in the hands of God.  But more importantly, her faith changed. It was her first step from living a life where she made her own worldly choices to a life where you submit to Him and trust your life in His hands. I believe God reaches out for us all through various people and circumstances.

Hebrews 7:25 says Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.

He has perfect plans to reach us all. In addition, the story of Rahab is an example that at the foot of the cross How is God reaching out to you now? How will God use you to share His story this year? How will you seek Him this year? Where will you look?

My son, if you receive my words and treasure up my commandments with you,
2 making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; 3 yes, if you call out for insight and raise your voice for understanding, 4 if you seek it like silver and search for it as for hidden treasures,5 then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. Proverbs 2:1-5

A special thanks to Renee Voltz for sharing this song by Randy Travis and Josh Turner with me that reminded her of the story of Rahab.  Hearing this song was a reminder to me of how God’s people and word can change the trajectory of anyone’s life.  That our words and actions that represent Him can have a ripple effect on so many.  What conversations will you have this year?

Dear Lord,

Thank you for giving us your living word that is always available to us.  For sharing stories of Rahab which show your grace and love for us. That our past is our past, and through our belief in you, our slate is wiped clean.  Thank you for sending your son to lay down His life for us. We are saved by your grace and not what we have, can, or will do.  God we love you and pray that we store up your wisdom and submit ourselves to you in all our days you give to us.  Amen

Proverbs 2:10 for wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;