6 Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them. 7 Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. 8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. 9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1 6-9
After church this morning, I was thinking about these versus on courage. Courage is something I have lacked for so many years. It is only in this last year, I have changed so many things in my life, I have moved out of my comfort zone.
You see, God uses people who realize they are weak. In Joshua 1, God told Joshua to “be strong and courageous” a total of three times in four verses. Why? It was probably because He knew Joshua was afraid.
Another good verse that should give us courage is Ephesians 2:10 which say’s we we should step out in bold obedience. The good works he has prepared beforehand—we should walk in them!
Are there things God has prepared for you to do? When did you last reassess God’s call on your life? What are you passionate about?
For me, my calling is one that is not very popular with society as a whole. And that’s o.k, because if the Lord has called me, He will lead the way, and he has! The empathy the lord has given me for women and children finding themselves in abusive situations, has lead to a passion that burns bright in my soul. As a survivor, when I can come along side a women or child and hold them as I share God’s word is the best feeling in the word. Women in these situations need God’s word as He is the ultimate healer, not the worldly alternative.
I have faced persecution from Christians that say “I am a feminist”…let me assure you this is so far from the truth. Jesus loved the downcast the underdog. One of the clearest features of the life and teachings of Jesus is the way that Jesus included people that everyone else left out. Jesus included criminals (the thief on the cross), the people that were unclean (did not keep all of the cleanliness laws and rituals), and people who were outcast (Samaritans, Gentiles, the poor, the sick, lepers, women, and the list goes on). Jesus always defined his mission on the basis of who is included, not on who is left out. I want to follow the example of Christ.
God’s heart always is to save people. Every soul is precious to Him. God always cares about individuals, and we should follow his example.
I find that your courage will rise up when you have confidence that Jesus has called you. Most people leave their (calling) ministry because of confusion and a lack of courage.
If God has called you, he is with you. Courage doesn’t mean that I am not afraid, I am a lot, when trying to help a women and her children escape their violent husband and father. But, It means that I fear God more than I fear my environment. It means that I trust in his divine resources more than the resources of man.
Leadership is strengthened by our acts of obedience. Every time we are obedient we get stronger. Obedience is a verb, not a position. You know you’re on the right path when you’re being shot at. If you’re running because of opposition, you’ll be running for the rest of your life.
Your ability to endure deepens your resolve. If you act courageously, you’ll get more courage. God is with you, but he’ll only strengthen you when you raise your leg and start walking forward. He can’t steer a parked car.
Devotion-ally master the word of God. Meditate day and night. Immerse yourself in the book. Love it, and live it. God uses people who study and live by His Word. God told Joshua, “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night . . . ” (1:8 NKJV). If you want to be used by God, then you need to know the Word of God. “Meditate in it day and night,” God said to Joshua.
Remember: The integrity of your ministry is everything, so you have to practice the truth you’re proclaiming.
Joshua was communicating with the people he was leading, and he was encouraging them every step. If you want to be used by God, then this is what you need to do.
The Bible says, “For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him” (2 Chronicles 16:9 NKJV).
Will you be that person He can use? Will you answer the call?