I remember when God closed the doors for us to stay in California and everything pointed to moving to North Carolina. It was obvious and scary. I’m from NC, so there was some comfort in that for me. However my entire adult, married life had been spent in northern California. The thought of new friends, new church, new jobs, and a new home– with toddlers–was unnerving. I remember thinking what if we hate it there, what if we can’t find jobs, what if we can’t get a loan to build on the land we bought, what if, what if, what if…
I imagine Joshua felt much the same way when God told him he would lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. He was following in the footsteps of a legend… Moses. Tough shoes to fill! I can hear him now at least thinking to himself, “God I know Moses laid hands on me and promoted me to this position by Your guidance, but what if I don’t feel strong enough. What if I’m not worthy! What if I’m not capable!” But God spoke clearly, casting out every fear and “what if” Joshua may have had with His confirming words,
“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 1:9
It was a comfort to know God was guiding us, but in the timeline of my life, this was a spiritually confusing and rebellious time for me. I wasn’t honoring Him with my life, still God’s hand was on me. He never let me go. Despite my actions, He had a plan for my life.
Crazy, I couldn’t have imagined this life for myself if I’d tried. I know we never deserve anything He chooses to do for us, but I’m so overwhelmed that He chose not only to hold on to me when I had let go of His hand, but He broadened my borders! He lavished His love and gave me more than imaginable at a time when I least deserved it…during rebellion!
I was afraid! I feared following Him with a move. I feared the consequences of my actions. I feared that God would never be able to use me. Fear can be crippling!
“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.” 1 John 4:18
But, Love Himself drives out fear if we let Him. The same promise God made Joshua is true for us! Be strong and courageous, trusting God to forgive and equip and lead through the door that’s best to fulfill His purposes.
What door will we choose, fear or faith?
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
“A man’s steps are directed by the LORD. How then can anyone understand his own way?” Proverbs 20:24