Thursday, January 27, 2011

Using and Being Used ...

… in a good way that is!

I love how God uses other people to speak to us sometimes don't you?

I know sometimes when I pray to God I find that He uses another brother or sister to speak the very words I felt Him tell me in prayer; affirmation. After all, being the body, we can be used by Him in any way He sees fit.

I don't know what was going through Joshua's mind as he took the reins from Moses but I love what He revealed to me in the Word last night when I was reading. Three times as God was commissioning Joshua He told him something specific:

Be strong and courageous, for you shall cause this people to inherit the land that I swore to their fathers to give them. Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to do according to all the law that Moses my servant commanded you ... Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.” (Excerpt from Joshua 1:6-9 ESV)

I don't think Joshua was feeling very strong or courageous at all, else he wouldn't need to hear those words. I imagine his uncertainty and anxiety over taking this roll was getting pretty stressful, and encouragement is what he needed.

So just a little later in the chapter, as Joshua is standing before the people (probably feeling a bit overwhelmed) he gets to hear this …

And they answered Joshua, “All that you have commanded us we will do, and wherever you send us we will go ... Only be strong and courageous.” (Excerpt from Joshua 1:16-18 ESV)

Isn't that awesome!? I try and imagine myself as Joshua hearing and feeling these words coming from God; be strong and be courageous. If he was anything like me at all, and since we share a little thing called humanity I’m guessing he was, then he probably had some doubts about his strength. Then he gets to stand in front of the people, and hear them get behind him and the Lord, but yet just asking that their leader be these couple things: strong, and courageous. I don’t know about you but that clear type of affirmation would most certainly help my strength and courage.

Many times it’s not that clear though is it? Yet, many times it is, we’re just not hearing it. We do need to make sure we wash everything with the Word, and test it by the Spirit in prayer, but God clearly uses others. He did then, He does now; I wonder who He will use next. I wonder if I will be used next.

Listening,
~Matthew

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