When I was a little girl in church, I loved the story of Moses. Who wouldn’t be enthralled by the image of God parting the Red Sea so the Israelites could escape from Egypt? I’ve always had a vivid imagination, so when the pastor would mention “the promised land”, in my mind it was a beautiful oasis. I could picture the dusty and tired people, wandering around the desert, when suddenly, they crested the hill and beheld THE PROMISED LAND RESORT AND THEME PARK.

The reality was much different.

Joshua was the leader who actually led the people into the land, and he learned early on that it wasn’t going to be easy.

After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ aide: “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. I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses. Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Mediterranean Sea in the west. No one will be able to stand 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. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.  

Be strong and very courageous. 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. Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; 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. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1: 1-7

Be Strong and Courageous

God gave the land to his people, but they would have to actively participate in the taking of it. The Lord could have wiped out all of the inhabitants for Joshua. He could have struck them down in any number of ways making the area clean and ready. But he didn’t.

They had to listen and prepare. They had to have faith. They had to fight

They had to repent and do hard things when they went astray.

Too often I think that if God is calling me to do something, it means it’s going to be easy. When it’s not, I begin to doubt or second guess myself. If you’re beginning to doubt your mission or calling, remember Joshua’s story.

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

 The promised land that God has called you to, awaits. Fight for it.