Upon opening my Bible this morning to Joshua 13, the very first verse brought me both to tears and to my knees. “Now Joshua was old and stricken in years; and the Lord said unto him, Thou art old and stricken in years, and there remaineth yet very much land to be possessed.”
I, too, am “stricken in years,” and the temptation to retire from life often beckons. A rocking chair on the front porch sounds wonderful! There is only one problem – no porch! Furthermore, when I should be able agewise to contemplate retirement, God has prodded me into a brand new career as a professional speaker. Since the official launch last fall, momentum is building and I find myself asking, “Lord, where to from here?”
Verse 2 of Joshua 13 begins God’s specific instructions regarding all the land that Joshua was to possess in the will of God. In reality, this was just a reaffirmation of what God had promised to Abraham. In reading through God’s instructions to Joshua, I felt a little jealousy. I wanted to ask the Lord why he had not given me a complete set of written instructions so that I would know “where to from here.” In allowing that distracting thought, I almost missed God’s message to me in Verse 1: “There remaineth yet very much land to be possessed.” God was encouraging me to keep moving forward in faith. The “land” I am to possess is as much his promise to me as was the promise to Abraham. God has laid out a plan for this new path, and the recurring message I get from him is simple: “Keep moving forward in faith. Trust me, do not trust how things seem to you. Trust me!”
In Joshua 14 I was impressed with Caleb’s request for Hebron as his inheritance because he had “wholly followed the Lord.” When Moses sent the spies into the land they were to possess, only Joshua and Caleb “wholly followed the Lord.” Caleb stepped out in obedient faith to go into a land completely unknown to him. God through Moses honored that faith so that Caleb could boldly ask of Joshua, “Give me this mountain.” The lesson here is clear: I must act in faith before comes any reward. I must keep moving forward. I must trust that God’s plan will be revealed in his time and not mine.
But the capstone of God’s message to me came in Joshua 22:45: “There failed not ought of any good thing which the Lord had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass.” (bold italics mine) What God has ordained for this time of my life will be accomplished! I must keep moving forward in faith. I choose to keep moving forward in faith because “there is yet very much land to be possessed.”
The Lord be praised!