“Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan
River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites…..
Be strong and very courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be
discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you
wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:2, 9)
I love the story of the Exodus. I like the details and all the things that happen. I even enjoy the listing of names and laws that come in that story. But, I especially love the instructions that come to Joshua as the Israelites are about to enter the Promised Land.
Those folks had wandered for forty years. They had complained and rebelled and about given up hope at times. And then comes the big day when they are about to cross the River Jordan to enter that land that they had dreamed about.
No one was left who remembered being there before. So, this new territory was pretty frightening. They had heard the stories, they had celebrated God’s leading them from slavery. They had wandered, packing up their things to go to the next place with regularity. They knew about that. What they didn’t know was what it was going to be like when they got to their new homes.
We sort of feel like that about our new configuration for this congregation. We have talked about it and some have even dreamed about it. But we simply don’t know exactly what it’s going to be like in the next months and years.
God said to Joshua and the Israelites, “Be strong, don’t be discouraged, I’ll be with you through it all.” In the midst of all this change, God says the same thing to us: “Be strong, don’t be discouraged, I’ll be with you through it all.” And that’s good news!