Shout to the Lord
“…Shout! For the Lord has given you the town!” (Joshua 6:16 NLT)
Every season except for summer feels like one of “new beginnings.” For me, as it may be for many of you, it’s the beginning of a new school year! I finished one capstone project just in time to start up the second one in my program. At church, it’s the beginning of our fall series, the start of new programs, and getting back into the swing of things.
And I’m going to guess that for many of us, the stress is starting to pile up. Whether you are starting something new that’s exciting/terrifying or continuing where you left off, just pause for a minute with me and meditate on the knowledge that God “has given you the town.”
I know as a church we studied a bit of Joshua over the summer, but maybe you are like me and either worked too much or took off on vacation! Funny enough, I’m studying it in my Bible study group. I had forgotten how God had literally handed the Israelites the city of Jericho. They had other specific commandments, but for that “battle” they marched around the city and raised their voices to a God that knocked those walls down. I’m not sure if the shouting was praise and worship, but I’ve always read it like that.
Looking at the story, I think I would have felt foolish in their shoes while marching around and around. But at this point in their campaign in the Promise Land, God had already done the miracle at the Jordan River (see Joshua 3:1-17). God showed his power to the generation born in the desert, because it was the generation older that had rebelled even though they had miraculously seen God’s glory time and again on their journey out of slavery. How encouraged the new generation must have felt!
Two questions I’ve asked myself from this: When was the last time I saw God move? And how did it encourage me then? With all the new things or maybe for some difficult things going on, it’s easy to lose sight of how God’s already gone before us. For me, fear is always there. I’m constantly wondering, is this the right decision or am I going to make that deadline? My “favorite” doubt statement is “this can’t be what God meant.” For example, my stomach always does a little drop whenever there’s a sermon about evangelism—like evangelism in Seattle?! Do your hands get sweaty like mine?
What’s interesting is, if God’s called us to it, he’s already working in it. I’m not saying that it’ll be easier. It couldn’t have been easy to march around the outside of the city; that part doesn’t sound like much of a battle strategy. But to get to the point that you can do that and know that God will move? How amazing! My hope is that in the face of all the new things this fall, we seek to know how to go about it. When we do, then we obey, then shout, offering our worship. That’s what we have been called to do, as He’s already moved ahead of us. And with each move He makes, we get bolder and more encouraged!
Miel can be reached by email here.