Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Stepping into the River

There is a constant battle raging in our world today. Some may think this battle is only between good and evil, but I am not certain that is the case. The primary battle in the world is between fear and faith. If you think about your life, most of the decisions you make aren't between a horrific sin and a truly good act. If you are like me, your decisions are between what you know and what is uncertain, between what is comfortable and safe and what is outside your comfort zone and may cost you something.

The people of Israel faced a similar choice in Joshua 3 when they reached the bank of the Jordan River. The edge of that river represented the beginning of a new era in the history of Israel; it was the boundary of the land that God promised them many years ago. They had been here forty years before and had let their fear of the monstrous people within the land keep them from pursuing God's purpose for their nation. Now a new generation of Israelites had an opportunity to follow God boldly into the land and take possession of what they had been promised.

The problem was the river itself. It wasn't the typical calm, gentle current the Jordan usually followed; this was a raging river during the flood season. God provided a way across this river; he told the priests of Israel to take the ark of the covenant and walk right into the river. God promised that if they trusted him, he would make a way for the entire nation to cross the Jordan River safely.

Now the people of Israel had a choice to make. They could play it safe and stay on the other side of the Jordan, or they could take a step of courage and faith into the raging waters of the river. I think we all have similar decisions to make in our lives. We can play it safe on the edge of the river where life is calm and secure, or we can risk it all by stepping into the chaos of our world. The willingness to risk security and comfort is a must if you want to experience the best God has to offer you. God's best never comes easily! All too often we choose the easy path because of our fears.

Know this: whenever you play it safe you reinforce your fears! We spend so much time talking and arguing with ourselves and others about the proper path in life that we forget to actually do anything. Don't debate it. DO IT! Reject the natural impulse to always play it safe and instead choose to get your feet wet!


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