Feeling scared? A little anxious? Not sure what the future will bring? So did Joshua.
Tomorrow on The Path we will begin reading the book of Joshua and the story of how God gave his people the promised land. For Joshua, it must have seemed a daunting task -- crossing the Jordan river at flood stage, attacking and taking the city of Jericho, and from there aggressively invading and conquering seven nations, each of which was larger than Israel and well fortified. God had promised success, and would be with them every step of the way. But...
Moses (in Deuteronomy 31) had told Joshua twice to be "strong and courageous". Now in Joshua chapter 1, God repeats that instruction not once, not twice, but three times!
Deep down, Joshua must have known that everything was going to be OK. But this was all brand new. Joshua had never been through anything like this. he couldn't help but be nervous.
You and I are also facing something we've never seen before. The world hasn't seen anything like the Corona Virus since the 1918 Spanish Flu. This is new territory and we're guessing our way though it.
Good news! God knows what he's doing. This pandemic isn't a surprise to God. And his message to us is the same as his message to Joshua: Be Strong and Courageous. Strength and courage don't mean the absence of fear or concern or preparation. Strength and courage mean you trust God to have a plan and to see you through. And he will. He gave the people of Israel the promised land, and he'll give us a way through this.
Jesus, who suffered and died in order to rescue you from the guilt of sin, isn't going to leave you now. He loves you. He's with you. He has it all under control. Trust him. Be Strong and Courageous.
Next Sunday's Message -- "Do Not Be Anxious" from Matthew 6:25-34
Pastor Marty Hufford.
Peace Lutheran Church.