Called to Overcome

Obstacles, Strength, Courage

Life is filled with challenges.  It’s just the way it is. You can’t know victory unless you have faced the challenge of defeat.  You won’t appreciate joy until you have endured heartache.  You will not understand compassion until you have needed it from another. How we face the challenges of life will determine whether we are overcome or become overcome-ers.

This morning we begin a new study together.  We head to the Old Testament book of Joshua.  It is the sixth book of the Old Testament and it records the entry of the Jews into the Promised Land . . . the land they still occupy to some extent.  We are going to look at this book because it is the story of how the Children of Israel faced the task of taking the land God had promised them.

The book of Joshua follows directly on the heels of the book of Deuteronomy.  The books of Exodus through Deuteronomy record the time when Moses led the Israelites (the descendents of Jacob, later called “Israel”).  Exodus records how God led the people out of slavery in Egypt and the giving of the Law. Leviticus explained God’s regulations for worship and God’s standard of holiness.  Numbers tells us how God originally led Moses and the children of Israel to the land that He had promised to them. They sent twelve spies into the land to bring back a report.  One of those spies was Joshua.

The spies returned from their mission bringing good news and bad news.  They said the land was indeed fruitful and rich.  That was the good news.  The bad news was that big and strong warriors occupied the land.  Ten of the spies concluded that they could never defeat these people.  Their report started the people grumbling against Moses.  The other two men: Joshua and Caleb agreed with the report, but their conclusion was vastly different.  They said, “We should go take the land, because God is on our side.”  The people sided with the majority.

It was as a result of this decision that the children of Israel were made to wander for 40 years in the wilderness.  They wandered until every one of the adults living during the time of spies had died.  Everyone, that is, except Joshua and Caleb.

The book of Deuteronomy records the final words of Moses.  Forty years had passed and a new generation of the Hebrews was ready to enter into the Promised Land.  Moses reminded them of the Law of God (Deuteronomy means “second law”). Moses (by God’s direction) anointed Joshua as the new leader.

As the book of Joshua begins, Moses had recently died and the grieving period had ended. In this first chapter Joshua is commissioned to replace Moses. This book records the entry into the Promised Land and the beginning of this new nation.

THE COMMISSION  (1:1-5)

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. 3 I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 4 Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Great Sea on the west. 5 No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. [Joshua 1:1-5, NIV]

Don’t miss the power and maybe the intimidation of these words.  Joshua had been Moses aide for 40 years.  In many ways he was more than trained for the task before him.  On the other hand, this new responsibility may very well have been very overwhelming.  Moses was known as a friend of God, the most humble man on the earth.  How could anyone fill such huge sandals?  It was a daunting assignment.

God told Joshua the rough boundaries of this new land that God had given to Israel. By some estimates it was about 300,000 square miles! It was a land filled with inhabitants who would not give up that land without a fierce fight. It was a big job; an enormous undertaking. Joshua had incredible confidence in the promise and power of God but he may have felt somewhat small and inadequate.

Many of you face a daunting challenge like this in your life.

  • Perhaps you are replacing a deceased spouse in a family
  • Maybe you are given the responsibility of raising your Grandchildren or nieces and nephews
  • Perhaps you must change the direction of a dying business
  • Maybe you have been promoted and you feel like you are in way over your head
  • Maybe you are struggling to overcome a public failure, a nagging addiction, or a relentless disease.
  • Perhaps you are suddenly a single parent
  • Maybe you are trying to stand for Christ on a liberal and hostile University campus

If this is the kind of situation you face, you may very well understand the apprehension of Joshua.  The challenge is great and you aren’t sure that you are up to the challenge.

THE PROMISE (1:6,9)

God, of course understood the hesitancy of Joshua.  He said to him,

“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. 7 Be strong and very courageous.

9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

When someone is filled with worry it usually doesn’t help to say, “You just need to stop worrying and relax!”  When a person is afraid it usually doesn’t help to say, “Don’t be afraid!”  When people tell us to “be strong!” when we feel weak, we want to scream at the person, “Don’t you think I would be strong if I could be?”

It is tempting to hear these words from God to Joshua in the same way.  But there is a huge difference. Three times God says, “Be strong and courageous”. Each time God gives the command to Joshua, He also gives him a reason why he should be strong and have great courage.

  • You will lead the people to inherit the land I promised them (be strong because I am going to do something great through you)
  • I am the one who has commanded you (be strong because I know what I’m doing)
  • I will be with you through the whole campaign (be strong because I’ve got your back)

God is not asking Joshua to merely “suck it up!”  He is telling him that he can have courage because God has already guaranteed victory.  God had already given the land to the people.  It is theirs for the taking. God didn’t tell Joshua that it was going to be easy.  He told him that he would succeed by the strength of the Lord.

Please understand that God tells you the exact same thing! In the book of Hebrews this same promise of God’s presence is applied to believers: “I will never leave you or forsake you” (Heb 13:5) John reminded us that “Greater is he who is in you, than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)  Jesus said, “in the world we would have tribulation, but we can have courage because He (who lives in us) has overcome the world.” (John 16:33) The Bible is filled with promises just like these.

As we face the challenges of life, God wants us to know that He has not left us to “fend for ourselves”. He is with us.  We do not have to rely on our own strength, because God has given us His strength through the indwelling of His Spirit.

It’s easy to forget these things. One time when Martin Luther was feeling very defeated by life, his wife Katherine, dramatically revived the depressed Reformer’s confidence in God’s providence. Katherine dressed up in widows garb and began to mourn deeply.  When Luther asked why she sorrowed, she told him that she mourned because she gathered, from his behavior, that God must have died.  Luther smiled and got the message. He changed his attitude and continued on.

We can face most anything if we can but remember that we are children of God.  The strong arms of God hold us up.  The matchless wisdom of God leads us forward.  The unfailing promise of God makes victory sure.

THE STRATEGY (1:7-9)

Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

Think about these words for a minute.  Joshua is facing a series of tremendous military battles.  Yet, God doesn’t talk to him about tactics, or battle strategy. He doesn’t start by giving Him a plan of attack.  Instead God talked to him about his heart.  God wanted Joshua (and us) to know that the key to overcoming the obstacles of our lives is spiritual not managerial!  Whatever barrier you face, whatever challenge you come across, your strength for overcoming that barrier is the Lord.

How do we tap into His strength?  Listen to what God told Joshua:  “Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you.”  In other words: “follow the instruction of the Word of God.  Trust your Bible.”

The Lord told Joshua not let the book of the Law depart from his mouth.  He is not saying, “Don’t talk about the Law”, He is saying, “Don’t ever STOP pointing people to the truth of God’s Word!” God told Joshua to meditate (think about, ponder, reflect on) the Law of God day and night.  He told him that the best way to prepare for the unknown obstacles ahead was to be a Scripture-saturated person.  In Psalm 1 we read,

1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked

or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.

2But his delight is in the law of the Lord,

and on his law he meditates day and night.

3He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season

and whose leaf does not wither.

Whatever he does prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)

This seems so simple yet how often we ignore this advice.  We will attend seminars, go to counseling, get more education, hire consultants, and even try all kinds of crazy schemes BEFORE we are willing to turn and submit to the wisdom of God’s Word.  We should turn to the Word of God FIRST.  If we would simply do what God says, we would be spared many of the difficulties that we face in life.  Think about how many of our heartaches would be avoided if,

  • We obeyed God’s commands about sexual morality
  • If we followed His counsel regarding telling the truth
  • If we forgave people and left justice to the Lord rather than trying to bring it about ourselves
  • If we trusted God to provide for us rather than trust our credit card
  • If we took time to rest and to worship rather than continually push our bodies
  • If we became passionate about character issues rather than external things

The Lord told Joshua to not depart from the law to the right or to the left.  Do you get this?  Joshua is told that he is not to pick and choose from God’s Word He is to do exactly what it says.  When we obey the Scriptures selectively, we are setting ourselves up as the authority that determines what is valuable and what is not.  When we do that, we are playing God.

Suppose someone said, “I really want to have children, I think it would be great to have children.  It would be fun to play with them and stuff.  I don’t want to have to feed them or change them, or discipline them.  I don’t want to have to spend any money to take care of them . . . but I sure want to be a parent.”  You would probably start praying that this person never become a parent because they don’t have a clue!  Parenting is not something that comes to us ala Carte.  We don’t pick and choose what we like from what we don’t like as if we were at a buffet.  It’s a package deal.

It’s the same thing with the Word of God.  We must obey ALL of it. Practically, this means,

  • You can’t claim the blessings without also accepting the responsibility of obedience.
  • You can’t claim God’s riches without also accepting the command to sacrifice and the promise of suffering
  • You can’t celebrate God’s loving nature without also accepting the fact that God is Holy and Just
  • You can’t claim God’s forgiveness and not be willing to forgive others
  • You can’t claim God’s love if you are not willing to extend love to those around you
  • You can’t embrace His promise of Heaven if you aren’t willing to embrace Him as your Savior and Ruler in life.
  • You can’t expect His blessing if you aren’t also willing to take a step of faith

RESPONSE (1:16-18)

Joshua responds to and was ready to move forward in the strength that God would provide.  Joshua told the people to prepare and told the tribes that were going to stay on the east side of the Jordan River to get ready to help their brothers secure their land.  The people respond,

16“Whatever you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go. 17 Just as we fully obeyed Moses, so we will obey you. Only may the Lord your God be with you as he was with Moses. 18 Whoever rebels against your word and does not obey your words, whatever you may command them, will be put to death. Only be strong and courageous!”

The people say, “We’re with you Joshua!” As you read further into Joshua you will see that the people did go into battle and were courageous.  God did fight for them in remarkable ways.  But note something else. God had prepared to give them 300,000 square miles of land.  History shows, that the people claimed only 30,000 square miles.  That’s only 10% of the blessing God had in store for them. These people started strong but lacked the endurance and perseverance to obtain all God had for them.

Please heed the warning.  We have all been people who started out fervently for the Lord but seemed to become impatient or even bored with the process.  We lacked perseverance.  If we want to overcome the obstacles of life we must dig in and be ready to follow faithfully for the rest of our lives. Like Paul we must

“not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:13-14)

So how do we begin?

  1. We must become true children of God.  The promise is not for everyone.  It is only for those who will entrust themselves to Him.
  2. We must become people of the Book.  We must not only read our Bibles for information but we should read for instruction.  We must put the truth into practice.  We must read the Scriptures being quick to ask “How does this apply to my life?”
  3. We must determine that we will do what God requires even though we may not want to do so.  And as you do this more and more you will discover the wisdom of His ways and obedience will become easier.
  4. We need to trust God’s promise rather than our feelings.
    1. When we feel all alone we must remember that He has promised that he will NEVER leave us or forsake us
    2. When circumstances seem insurmountable we need to remember not to write the ending of the story until the story has ended.
    3. When we don’t know which way to go we need to consider that God might be telling us to stand still until the timing is right
    4. When we feel that we have failed miserably we must run back to the cross and remind ourselves of His staggering forgiveness.

At the conclusion of every MDA telethon over Labor Day weekend, Jerry Lewis sits on a stool and sings to his kids.  All these children and adults know their prognosis is not good.  Lewis sings,

“when you walk through a storm hold your head up high, and don’t be afraid of the dark.  At the end of the storm is golden sky and the sweet silver song of a lark.  Walk on through the wind; walk on through the rain, though your dreams be tossed and blown. Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart for you never walk alone.  You never walk alone.”

It is a moving song because you know that Lewis means what he sings.   But I find the song is also moving because it is the exact same God sang Joshua and He sings it also to you.  Whatever obstacle you face now or in the future remember His words: be strong, be courageous, hold to the truth and remember that you never walk alone.

Life is filled with challenges.  It’s just the way it is. You can’t know victory unless you have faced the challenge of defeat.  You won’t appreciate joy until you have endured heartache.  You will not understand compassion until you have needed it from another. How we face the challenges of life will determine whether we are overcome or become overcome-ers.

This morning we begin a new study together.  We head to the Old Testament book of Joshua.  It is the sixth book of the Old Testament and it records the entry of the Jews into the Promised Land . . . the land they still occupy to some extent.  We are going to look at this book because it is the story of how the Children of Israel faced the task of taking the land God had promised them.

The book of Joshua follows directly on the heels of the book of Deuteronomy.  The books of Exodus through Deuteronomy record the time when Moses led the Israelites (the descendents of Jacob, later called “Israel”).  Exodus records how God led the people out of slavery in Egypt and the giving of the Law. Leviticus explained God’s regulations for worship and God’s standard of holiness.  Numbers tells us how God originally led Moses and the children of Israel to the land that He had promised to them. They sent twelve spies into the land to bring back a report.  One of those spies was Joshua.

The spies returned from their mission bringing good news and bad news.  They said the land was indeed fruitful and rich.  That was the good news.  The bad news was that big and strong warriors occupied the land.  Ten of the spies concluded that they could never defeat these people.  Their report started the people grumbling against Moses.  The other two men: Joshua and Caleb agreed with the report, but their conclusion was vastly different.  They said, “We should go take the land, because God is on our side.”  The people sided with the majority.

It was as a result of this decision that the children of Israel were made to wander for 40 years in the wilderness.  They wandered until every one of the adults living during the time of spies had died.  Everyone, that is, except Joshua and Caleb.

The book of Deuteronomy records the final words of Moses.  Forty years had passed and a new generation of the Hebrews was ready to enter into the Promised Land.  Moses reminded them of the Law of God (Deuteronomy means “second law”). Moses (by God’s direction) anointed Joshua as the new leader.

As the book of Joshua begins, Moses had recently died and the grieving period had ended. In this first chapter Joshua is commissioned to replace Moses. This book records the entry into the Promised Land and the beginning of this new nation.

THE COMMISSION  (1:1-5)

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. 3 I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. 4 Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Great Sea on the west. 5 No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. [Joshua 1:1-5, NIV]

Don’t miss the power and maybe the intimidation of these words.  Joshua had been Moses aide for 40 years.  In many ways he was more than trained for the task before him.  On the other hand, this new responsibility may very well have been very overwhelming.  Moses was known as a friend of God, the most humble man on the earth.  How could anyone fill such huge sandals?  It was a daunting assignment.

God told Joshua the rough boundaries of this new land that God had given to Israel. By some estimates it was about 300,000 square miles! It was a land filled with inhabitants who would not give up that land without a fierce fight. It was a big job; an enormous undertaking. Joshua had incredible confidence in the promise and power of God but he may have felt somewhat small and inadequate.

Many of you face a daunting challenge like this in your life.

  • Perhaps you are replacing a deceased spouse in a family
  • Maybe you are given the responsibility of raising your Grandchildren or nieces and nephews
  • Perhaps you must change the direction of a dying business
  • Maybe you have been promoted and you feel like you are in way over your head
  • Maybe you are struggling to overcome a public failure, a nagging addiction, or a relentless disease.
  • Perhaps you are suddenly a single parent
  • Maybe you are trying to stand for Christ on a liberal and hostile University campus

If this is the kind of situation you face, you may very well understand the apprehension of Joshua.  The challenge is great and you aren’t sure that you are up to the challenge.

THE PROMISE (1:6,9)

God, of course understood the hesitancy of Joshua.  He said to him,

“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. 7 Be strong and very courageous.

9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

When someone is filled with worry it usually doesn’t help to say, “You just need to stop worrying and relax!”  When a person is afraid it usually doesn’t help to say, “Don’t be afraid!”  When people tell us to “be strong!” when we feel weak, we want to scream at the person, “Don’t you think I would be strong if I could be?”

It is tempting to hear these words from God to Joshua in the same way.  But there is a huge difference. Three times God says, “Be strong and courageous”. Each time God gives the command to Joshua, He also gives him a reason why he should be strong and have great courage.

  • You will lead the people to inherit the land I promised them (be strong because I am going to do something great through you)
  • I am the one who has commanded you (be strong because I know what I’m doing)
  • I will be with you through the whole campaign (be strong because I’ve got your back)

God is not asking Joshua to merely “suck it up!”  He is telling him that he can have courage because God has already guaranteed victory.  God had already given the land to the people.  It is theirs for the taking. God didn’t tell Joshua that it was going to be easy.  He told him that he would succeed by the strength of the Lord.

Please understand that God tells you the exact same thing! In the book of Hebrews this same promise of God’s presence is applied to believers: “I will never leave you or forsake you” (Heb 13:5) John reminded us that “Greater is he who is in you, than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)  Jesus said, “in the world we would have tribulation, but we can have courage because He (who lives in us) has overcome the world.” (John 16:33) The Bible is filled with promises just like these.

As we face the challenges of life, God wants us to know that He has not left us to “fend for ourselves”. He is with us.  We do not have to rely on our own strength, because God has given us His strength through the indwelling of His Spirit.

It’s easy to forget these things. One time when Martin Luther was feeling very defeated by life, his wife Katherine, dramatically revived the depressed Reformer’s confidence in God’s providence. Katherine dressed up in widows garb and began to mourn deeply.  When Luther asked why she sorrowed, she told him that she mourned because she gathered, from his behavior, that God must have died.  Luther smiled and got the message. He changed his attitude and continued on.

We can face most anything if we can but remember that we are children of God.  The strong arms of God hold us up.  The matchless wisdom of God leads us forward.  The unfailing promise of God makes victory sure.

THE STRATEGY (1:7-9)

Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

Think about these words for a minute.  Joshua is facing a series of tremendous military battles.  Yet, God doesn’t talk to him about tactics, or battle strategy. He doesn’t start by giving Him a plan of attack.  Instead God talked to him about his heart.  God wanted Joshua (and us) to know that the key to overcoming the obstacles of our lives is spiritual not managerial!  Whatever barrier you face, whatever challenge you come across, your strength for overcoming that barrier is the Lord.

How do we tap into His strength?  Listen to what God told Joshua:  “Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you.”  In other words: “follow the instruction of the Word of God.  Trust your Bible.”

The Lord told Joshua not let the book of the Law depart from his mouth.  He is not saying, “Don’t talk about the Law”, He is saying, “Don’t ever STOP pointing people to the truth of God’s Word!” God told Joshua to meditate (think about, ponder, reflect on) the Law of God day and night.  He told him that the best way to prepare for the unknown obstacles ahead was to be a Scripture-saturated person.  In Psalm 1 we read,

1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked

or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.

2But his delight is in the law of the Lord,

and on his law he meditates day and night.

3He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season

and whose leaf does not wither.

Whatever he does prospers. (Psalm 1:1-3)

This seems so simple yet how often we ignore this advice.  We will attend seminars, go to counseling, get more education, hire consultants, and even try all kinds of crazy schemes BEFORE we are willing to turn and submit to the wisdom of God’s Word.  We should turn to the Word of God FIRST.  If we would simply do what God says, we would be spared many of the difficulties that we face in life.  Think about how many of our heartaches would be avoided if,

  • We obeyed God’s commands about sexual morality
  • If we followed His counsel regarding telling the truth
  • If we forgave people and left justice to the Lord rather than trying to bring it about ourselves
  • If we trusted God to provide for us rather than trust our credit card
  • If we took time to rest and to worship rather than continually push our bodies
  • If we became passionate about character issues rather than external things

The Lord told Joshua to not depart from the law to the right or to the left.  Do you get this?  Joshua is told that he is not to pick and choose from God’s Word He is to do exactly what it says.  When we obey the Scriptures selectively, we are setting ourselves up as the authority that determines what is valuable and what is not.  When we do that, we are playing God.

Suppose someone said, “I really want to have children, I think it would be great to have children.  It would be fun to play with them and stuff.  I don’t want to have to feed them or change them, or discipline them.  I don’t want to have to spend any money to take care of them . . . but I sure want to be a parent.”  You would probably start praying that this person never become a parent because they don’t have a clue!  Parenting is not something that comes to us ala Carte.  We don’t pick and choose what we like from what we don’t like as if we were at a buffet.  It’s a package deal.

It’s the same thing with the Word of God.  We must obey ALL of it. Practically, this means,

  • You can’t claim the blessings without also accepting the responsibility of obedience.
  • You can’t claim God’s riches without also accepting the command to sacrifice and the promise of suffering
  • You can’t celebrate God’s loving nature without also accepting the fact that God is Holy and Just
  • You can’t claim God’s forgiveness and not be willing to forgive others
  • You can’t claim God’s love if you are not willing to extend love to those around you
  • You can’t embrace His promise of Heaven if you aren’t willing to embrace Him as your Savior and Ruler in life.
  • You can’t expect His blessing if you aren’t also willing to take a step of faith

RESPONSE (1:16-18)

Joshua responds to and was ready to move forward in the strength that God would provide.  Joshua told the people to prepare and told the tribes that were going to stay on the east side of the Jordan River to get ready to help their brothers secure their land.  The people respond,

16“Whatever you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go. 17 Just as we fully obeyed Moses, so we will obey you. Only may the Lord your God be with you as he was with Moses. 18 Whoever rebels against your word and does not obey your words, whatever you may command them, will be put to death. Only be strong and courageous!”

The people say, “We’re with you Joshua!” As you read further into Joshua you will see that the people did go into battle and were courageous.  God did fight for them in remarkable ways.  But note something else. God had prepared to give them 300,000 square miles of land.  History shows, that the people claimed only 30,000 square miles.  That’s only 10% of the blessing God had in store for them. These people started strong but lacked the endurance and perseverance to obtain all God had for them.

Please heed the warning.  We have all been people who started out fervently for the Lord but seemed to become impatient or even bored with the process.  We lacked perseverance.  If we want to overcome the obstacles of life we must dig in and be ready to follow faithfully for the rest of our lives. Like Paul we must

“not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 3:13-14)

So how do we begin?

  1. We must become true children of God.  The promise is not for everyone.  It is only for those who will entrust themselves to Him.
  2. We must become people of the Book.  We must not only read our Bibles for information but we should read for instruction.  We must put the truth into practice.  We must read the Scriptures being quick to ask “How does this apply to my life?”
  3. We must determine that we will do what God requires even though we may not want to do so.  And as you do this more and more you will discover the wisdom of His ways and obedience will become easier.
  4. We need to trust God’s promise rather than our feelings.
    1. When we feel all alone we must remember that He has promised that he will NEVER leave us or forsake us
    2. When circumstances seem insurmountable we need to remember not to write the ending of the story until the story has ended.
    3. When we don’t know which way to go we need to consider that God might be telling us to stand still until the timing is right
    4. When we feel that we have failed miserably we must run back to the cross and remind ourselves of His staggering forgiveness.

At the conclusion of every MDA telethon over Labor Day weekend, Jerry Lewis sits on a stool and sings to his kids.  All these children and adults know their prognosis is not good.  Lewis sings,

“when you walk through a storm hold your head up high, and don’t be afraid of the dark.  At the end of the storm is golden sky and the sweet silver song of a lark.  Walk on through the wind; walk on through the rain, though your dreams be tossed and blown. Walk on, walk on, with hope in your heart for you never walk alone.  You never walk alone.”

It is a moving song because you know that Lewis means what he sings.   But I find the song is also moving because it is the exact same God sang Joshua and He sings it also to you.  Whatever obstacle you face now or in the future remember His words: be strong, be courageous, hold to the truth and remember that you never walk alone.

no video
Scripture:

Joshua 1:1-18