“…take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan…Each of you is to take up a stone on his shoulder…to serve as a sign among you…These stones are to be a memorial to the people…forever. For the LORD your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over.” Joshua 4:2-23
The drying up of the Jordan River is one of the most well-known miracles that God performed. It was such a visible miracle there was no denying it. Can you imagine standing on the bank of a vast body of water knowing you had to cross? Many of us are as we hang up that life changing phone call. Many of us are as we realize we may never have children. Many of us are as we say our goodbyes to our loved ones. Suddenly, the water begins to churn and violently moves as a separation begins to form exposing the bottom of those waters. You look to heaven and there is no doubting that God’s hand is in this activity. You know that Someone larger than life is orchestrating your walk. Although the water has been divided the walk is still muddy. But you realize that you are going to have to walk… you must cross… there is no other path but through the muddy but dried up circumstances.
The Israelites had no choice but to walk, to cross, to trust, and believe in the One who was instructed them. Once they were on the other side (and there will be another side) God instructed the Israelites to pick up twelve stones. The command was to carry it on their shoulders to memorialize their walk. He didn’t bring them out of the dried up journey empty handed, but provided tangible stones to carry into their new land.
Do you find yourself crossing over in territory that has been dried up financially, emotionally, or even spiritually? Is the walk muddy with fear, insecurity or sadness? We have a stone, a Cornerstone, who we can carry on our shoulders when things are dried up. ‘…built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself, as the chief cornerstone’ Ephesians 2:20. Not only will we emerge on the other side with Christ, but we will have visible rewards from our experience. When we carry Christ with us, when crossing over our difficult circumstances, He will provide us with the essential ‘stones’ from the riverbed. We will recognize these stones throughout the remaining days on earth as spiritual markers, those moments intimately and sacredly shared between the Creator and the created, the Father and the child, the Deliverer, and the delivered.