April 28, 2021·Elizabeth Ewens
Last week, Pastor Kristin wrote about our PAUSE Bible reading from Deuteronomy:
Victory is Ours!
Maybe you’re in a season where you’re facing some really challenging things and you’re tempted to throw in the towel and give up on following God. May I encourage you with this: “The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deuteronomy 31:8).
I love reading about Moses and Joshua. This week, we’re reading in the Book of Joshua. At the end of chapter 5, we read about Joshua’s encounter with the Lord,
13 Now when Joshua was near Jericho, he looked up and saw a man standing in front of him with a drawn sword in his hand. Joshua went up to him and asked, “Are you for us or for our enemies?”
14 “Neither,” he replied, “but as commander of the army of the Lord I have now come.” Then Joshua fell facedown to the ground in reverence, and asked him, “What message does my Lord have for his servant?”
15 The commander of the Lord’s army replied, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.
What a great encounter for Joshua — to actually have the commander of the Lord’s army appear to him. Wow! But hold on, when I read the next verse, I thought, “Jericho is securely barred. Done. No one is conquering it.”
1 Now the gates of Jericho were securely barred because of the Israelites. No one went out and no one came in.
2 Then the Lord said to Joshua, “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men.”
WHAT? “See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, …” “See?” Yes, I see a city securely barred, protected. I wonder if Joshua wondered if he was looking at the same city that God was looking at.
Have you ever had one of those moments when you thought God was going to do something, and then what you see is impossible? Of course, we’ve all had those moments. Just like Joshua. In those moments, we can either drop our heads and walk away, defeated, OR, we can believe what God said, NOT what our eyes see. Just like Joshua stood on God’s promise and conquered what appeared unconquerable, you and I have those opportunities to believe God, regardless of what we see.
I’ve learned that in those moments, when God invites me to “see” what He sees, I look with my eyes of faith, believing God’s promises, not what I see in the physical realm. I believe that the commander of the Lord’s army is with me, like He was with Joshua.
And, YES!, what Pastor Kristin declared last week is true — Victory Is Ours! Even in those situations where it appears victory is not an option, if we make the decision to believe God and His Word, not what our eyes see.
Pastor Elizabeth Ewens