Imagine taking those first steps…
the excitement, the trepidation, the sense of a whole new chapter of life unfolding!
I suppose this is what the people following Joshua's orders felt like at the edge of the Jordan River (Joshua 3).
"Is this really going to work?"
"Isn't this rather unconventional?"
"I heard stories like this about Moses, but that was in the 'olden times.'"
Yet again, God would set His people apart by asking them to take a step of faith. The priests would first bear the Ark of the Covenant into the river, and the people would follow. As they witnessed the river "stand up in a heap," twelve stones were gathered from the river bottom to serve as a memorial marker -- a reminder! Just as God held back these waters, God would also hold back their enemies from overflowing them.
Entering into the Promised Land was accompanied by a miracle they were always to remember. Each time they would see those "standing stones," they were to teach their children how God provided for them in a powerful way (Joshua 4).
Also important to their identity was the need to circumcise their sons born since leaving Egypt (Joshua 5). They were to bear a sign demonstrating that they would never be slaves to an earthly king. Now that they were entering into a new land of hostile cultures, this would signify, by covenant seals, that they belonged to God alone!
Every New Year, we cross a "threshold" and enter into new territory. It would be frightening if we did not have the promises and presence of God with us. But He does ask us to remember important duties of our relationship, and to trust Him. Get your toes a little wet this year -- Follow the Lord!
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