You Just Had To Be There!
Posted: Monday, April 22
April 22 Reading:
Verse of the Day:
The people of Israel served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders who outlived him—those who had personally experienced all that the Lord had done for Israel. (Joshua 24:31)
Have you ever seen or done something that a picture just couldn’t quite capture? How about when trying to explain a story or event to someone and the words can’t exactly illustrate what it was like. I recently had a trip with my Father where we spent the entire day together doing stuff we both really enjoy. We had a blast, took a lot of pictures, and I’ll forever cherish those memories! As I look back through the pictures and tell people about how much fun we had, I can never seem to capture the same magic I felt that day. It’s one of those things where you just had to be there!
As we come to the end of the book of Joshua, we reach the epilogue of Joshua’s leadership and the results. One of the notes made was that the people who had experienced the power of God under Joshua’s leadership remained faithful in their covenant with the Lord. That’s an interesting contrast to the previous generations who had also seen the mighty, supernatural power of God firsthand and still chose to do their own thing. So what made it click for these people?
The information given to us in verse 31 is that the people who obeyed had personally experienced all the Lord had done. It wasn’t information passed down to them, stories shared or monuments of memories explained. It was a very real and life defining experience with God Almighty and it changed them forever. We can read through Scripture about Jesus’ healing power, we can even have friends or family who have been healed by God. But until we experience the power of healing for ourselves, there’s nothing that can make it more real for us and boost our faith.
The encouragement we get from the Israelites under Joshua’s leadership is to have experienced with God that cannot be taken away from us. Someone smart once said, “A clever man with a clever argument can convince you of anything, but no one can rob you from an experience with God.” Seek our opportunities to experience God’s presence. It’s there that your faith will increase, the Word will become real, and your life will be changed!