AN UNCERTAIN FUTURE
“You make me brave…” In the NIV translation it says, “The Sovereign Lord is my strength.”
What does this mean for someone who is in the 80th decade of life? Everyone needs to be brave and strong. Life on this earth is not for the faint-hearted! But what about those of us whose youth and middle years are but a memory and the prospect of closing one’s eyes for the last time is real and getting closer?
Joshua was faced with the prospect of stepping into Moses’ shoes. He had to lead a vast crowd of people who didn’t have a very good track record, into an unknown land where there were giants and fortified cities. Their parents had been slaves and rebels, and had died in the desert for punishment because they refused to trust God.
He must have been terrified of the prospect. What guarantee did he have that this bunch of people would be any different from their parents? How could he succeed where their great leader, Moses had failed? Moses was lying buried somewhere on the mountain because he lost his temper with the people and beat on the rock instead of speaking to it. He forfeited his opportunity of entering the Promised Land. Would he, Joshua, do any better?
Into that terrible situation came the reassuring word of the Lord.
“As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you of forsake you.” Joshua 1:5b.
“Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the left or to the right, that you may be successful wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7.
Joshua gazed into an uncertain future with new courage. He could do it because God was with Him and he had the directives in God’s Word to be brave and to succeed.
It’s the same for you and me. Whether we are young or old, we don’t know what tomorrow holds. What does it feel like to be near the end of the road, to know that you no longer have the possibility of decades ahead, only years and possible only months?
It all depends on whose hand you are holding.
Minnie Louise Haskins’ poem (1908), says it all:
“I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year, ‘Give me a light that I may travel safely into the unknown.’ And he replied, ‘Go out into the darkness and put you hand in the hand of God. That shall be to you better than a light and safer than a known way’.
“So I went forth and, finding the hand of God, trod gladly into the night. And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone east.”
Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
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