Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

“I say to you [Joshua] what I said to Moses: ‘Wherever you go will be part of the land of Israel…No one will be able to oppose you as long as you live, for I will be with you just as I was with Moses; I will not abandon you or fail to help you.
Be strong and brave, for you will be a successful leader of my people; and they shall conquer all the land I promised to their ancestors.”
Joshua 1: 3, 5-6 (TLB)   

I wonder if it would be appropriate to claim two years of credit for dealing with difficult things—just because we had to deal with them in 2020.

Sounds about right, doesn’t it?

Not just the personal mountains we had to climb, but also dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, and a year of elections at every level across our nation—with decision day twenty-four hours away.

But did we miss anything along the way this year?

I wonder, and suspect we may have.

In the passages above, Moses has just died, and God has selected Joshua with the mantle of responsibility to lead his people into the Promised Land.

“Wherever you go will be part of the land of Israel,” God promised His people.

He set before them the land He promised. It was theirs. But their settlement and enjoyment of it required that they claim it. Everywhere they walked would be theirs.

It is unclear how much they actually claimed and conquered, but it is agreed by most that it was less than God had promised them.

Why? Why did they end up with less?

Missing all that God had promised was theirs.

Maybe it was because of fear of whatever and whomever they had to face. Perhaps after a while they lost the will to go on or grew tired in the trying. Maybe they got distracted with all that was going on around them.

Or maybe they really didn’t see or believe all that God had promised. Maybe they were just satisfied with being less than they could be.

Sounds almost like today.

Has the discord around the elections, and the fears surrounding all the coronavirus uncertainties caused us to pull back and to settle for less than we can be?

Has the dialogue about lockdowns, shutdowns, schools staying closed, and so many other concerns, kept us from reaching for all we can be—for ourselves, spouses, our children and friends?

Have personal mountains seemingly too high to climb robbed us of claiming all God has promised us, and all we were created to be?

In the midst of all we are going through, God is still there. Still calling us, as he called to Joshua, to be strong and brave and to conquer all He has promised us in life.

Promises to reach for, to possess and claim as our own—for today, tomorrow and always.

For ourselves and our families, for our friends, our nation and world.

Promises of God for all of us, all leading to the “promised lands” God always sets before us, calling us to continue to strive to be all He created us to be.

No matter what we face or go through.

No matter what others may say about us, or say we should do.

No matter the season of our lives.

God’s promises for you and for me—are always before us to claim for all He wants us to be and do with Him for ourselves and for others.

Claim them.

In His Name–Scott