Be Strong and Courageous

From Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson

April 10

Be Strong and Courageous 

Today’s Scripture Readings:

Psalm 51:1-12 | Deuteronomy 34:4- Josh 2:24 | Luke 13:22-14:6 | Proverbs 12:26

Today’s Scripture Focus:  Joshua 1

Be strong and courageous; for you shall put this people in possession of the land that I swore to their ancestors to give them.  Only be strong and very courageous, being careful to act in accordance with all the law that my servant Moses commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, so that you may be successful wherever you go. This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth; you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to act in accordance with all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall be successful. I hereby command you: Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:6-9 NRSV).

Joshua was faced with an amazing challenge. He was to follow in the footsteps of Moses and lead the people of Israel into the Promised Land. Not an easy task on either count: Moses was a great leader and the people of Israel were notorious for being difficult to lead.

He had proved himself a man of faith and a capable leader, but this is the kind of task that looked overwhelming. God knew that, and gave him the encouraging words he needed to hear.

He gave him words of reassurance: “Don’t be afraid, be strong and courageous.”

He gave him words of instruction: Meditate on my word, be careful to do everything it says, don’t turn to the right of the left.

He gave him words of promise: “I will give you every place you step” “You will be prosperous and successful.” And perhaps the most reassuring of all: “I will be with you wherever you go.”

Whenever faced by an opportunity that seems too big, too difficult or overwhelming the most important thing to realize is that we are not alone in the task. When God calls us to do something, he will be with us. In the final analysis, that is the only thing that really matters.

Hear God’s words of encouragement to you today: Be strong and courageous. Meditate on my word and don’t turn to the right or left but do exactly what it says. When you are feeling overwhelmed remember that I am with you and will be with you every step of the way!

Almighty God, help me to meditate on your word and carefully obey it. As I do, fill me with courage and strength for this day. I do not know what challenges await me, but I trust that you are with me and will go before me to prepare the way. Amen.

About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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