Today’s Scripture: Deuteronomy 31:5-8, 23; Joshua 1:1-9
I’m a procrastinator when it comes to certain things. I don’t mind certain chores (except the dishes), and I never minded studying. My procrastination comes more around things that I’m stressed about, or things that make me feel overwhelmed – things that make me vulnerable in some say. Rather than feeling overwhelmed or vulnerable, I have been known to put that thing off, whatever it is, and deal with it later.
Joshua is very relatable in that he, too, seemed to experience a sense of overwhelm sometimes. You can imagine why – he had huge shoes to fill when he took over leadership from Moses! The text doesn’t tell us anything about how he is feeling, but we get a sense from the way people are speaking to him that he was pretty scared and stressed out. Look how much reassurance Joshua needs as he begins his new journey:
Deuteronomy 31:7-8 – [Moses said], “Be strong and bold… It is the Lord ho goes before you. He will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear of be dismayed.”
Deuteronomy 31:23 – The Lord commissioned Joshua… and said, “Be strong and bold… I will be with you.”
Joshua 1:5-6 – [God said] “…As I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not fail you or forsake you. Be strong and courageous.”
Joshua 1:7 – [God said] “Only be strong and very courageous.”
Joshua 1: 9 – [God said] “…Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:18 – [The officers of the people said] “…Only be strong and courageous.”
We are all on a strange new journey of uncertainty during this pandemic, and at times, it is stressful and overwhelming. I don’t know who among us needs to hear some reassurance right now, but friends, be strong and courageous, for God is with us. God is walking this journey with us; God will not fail us or forsake us, so do not be dismayed. It is normal and healthy for us to feel afraid in these circumstances, but we don’t have to let that fear control our hearts and minds and spiral us into crippling anxiety. Be strong and courageous, my friends, because God is good and we are not alone!