The Promised Land
Today's Reading: Joshua 16-18; Luke 2:1-24
But there remained among the children of Israel seven tribes which had not yet received their inheritance. Then Joshua said to the children of Israel: "How long will you neglect to go and possess the land which the Lord God of your fathers has given you? (Joshua 18:2-3)
Joshua led the children of Israel into the Promised Land. He led them in battles against the existing nations in the land God promised them. The Lord continued to bless the Israelites in victories as they continued to take more territory, just as He had promised. In the beginning, their faith was strong. But as years passed, there was still the need to drive out the other inhabitants from their own allotted territories. Seven tribes hesitated to go forth and take their inheritance. The gift lay before them, so why the delay? Why did Joshua have to force them to go forward and take their gift?
Maybe they were afraid of being on their own for the first time. Maybe they were afraid of the unknown. Maybe they just did not know what to do with their own land. What about us? How many times do we neglect to receive the gift that God is giving us? We pray and pray for something and then one day, God answers our prayer. But the answer involves stepping out in some way, maybe having to do it alone. We can see the answer clearly before us, but we hesitate to go forth. Maybe we are afraid, just as the Israelites were. Maybe we are more comfortable just praying for something instead of actually receiving it. Are we always ready for the change that can come when we pray for things?
I pray that I don't miss out on what God has for me. I pray for more faith when those fears creep into my thinking. I pray for wisdom to know how to pray for those things that will involve changes in my life. Think about these verses today and how they apply to your life. Is there something you are neglecting to possess? God has a life of promise lands for each one of us. Don't let fear or hesitation keep you out of them.
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