Tag Archive: Joshua


People should never be discounted for who they appear to be, or what they may have done in the past. God can redeem and raise up the unlikeliest of people to do great things for His purposes.

This morning, my daily reading covered Joshua 2:1-21, which is the story of Rahab and how she helped the Israelite spies that Joshua had sent ahead to Jericho.

“Rahab is a woman in a male-centered world; and she is a prostitute, the kind of person we typically vilify. But if she doesn’t rescue these men – and help them escape with the information they have gained – this first campaign in the land of Canaan will fail, and the larger outcome may be complicated  – or worse.” (VOICE footnotes)

As a result of Rahab’s protection of the spies when the king had sent his guards to find them, she and her family would ultimately be spared. The spies spoke the following to Rahab: “We offer our own lives as a guarantee for your safety,” the men agreed. “If you don’t betray us, we will keep our promise and be kind to you when the Lord gives us the land.” – (Joshua 2:14, NLT)

Not only would her life be spared, but all of her family.

I love that a woman with such a sordid past, was used by God to do something so remarkable. Her act of kindness propelled the movement of an entire population into the promise so long sought after. No one should ever be discounted. We all have a past, yet each one has potential. God can do ANYTHING through a heart that is willing. May we rise up and look at the world around us through a lens that sees possibilities rather than just problems. Great things begin with the seemingly insignificant…

 

Do not choose discount,Finding Freedoms Flight

A colorful past;

For last shall be first,

And first shall be last.

God does not do things,

The way we foresee;

But rather He moves,

To set captives free.

Perceptions at times,

Are the thickest walls;

That limit our sight,

And disrupt His call.

Lord, give us Your eyes,

To see as You do;

Each person with gifts,

That You long to use.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You see every single person as someone with potential to do great things according to Your purposes. Thank You that our past does not discount us, nor does our present status. Forgive us for discounting ourselves or others from being useful to You. Teach us to trust You more, so that we may see ourselves and others through Your lens, not our own. Show us the potential in those around us, and help us to encourage and draw out the good in all. Help us to love others well, just as You love us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we look for opportunities to move where You are calling, and to encourage those around us as they step out in faith. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy. – Job 8:21

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So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you. – (Deuteronomy 31:6, NLT)

 

Though these words were from Moses to Joshua and those who were to lead the Israelites into the promised land, they hold true for us today as well. Yesterday, as I chose to go in trust to my MRI, I kept reminding myself that God would be with me, despite the claustrophobic conditions that I would be subjected to for my impending MRI, and that no matter what, His presence would be my comfort. As I arrived, my heart was settled, for I had chosen to trust, regardless of what I was about to face. God had personally gone before me in a way that I could not have even imagined, for as the kind technician led me back to the machine, I was greeted by an open machine with a large window looking outside at blooming trees. Because the imaging was for my back, I was placed in the apparatus feet first, leaving my head quite close to the end, with permission and the ability to turn and look out the window as I wished. What could have been an hour of panic and misery, was almost restful and relaxing. I never once felt ill-at-ease, and could not stop thanking God for His overwhelming kindness in something that might be considered so insignificant to many.  My choice to seek strength and courage in Christ, kept fear and panic in check. He personally went before me, and remained present throughout the entire process. If He cares about something so seemingly insignificant as this, how much more does He care about the big stuff? The unknown is always the most unnerving, and Monday that is exactly where I am headed as I go see the specialist about this injury. As I prepare to go, I will cling to the promises that He has proven true again and again, and trust Him to be my source of strength and courage. God has already gone before me and knows the outcome. No matter what is spoken, He will neither fail me nor abandon me. May we choose courage and strength, keeping panic far from us – for God is the one who will go ahead of us without failing us nor abandoning us; for He is always faithful.

 

Do not give panic,Dispelling Discouragement

A place to take hold;

For the Lord our God,

Gives strength to be bold.

He goes before us,

And prepares the way;

He’ll never leave us,

If we ask He stay.

What we are to face,

Really matters not;

For God is greater,

Each battle, He’s fought.

Choose to trust the Lord,

For in Him, strength’s found;

Rise up and fear not,

His grace shall abound.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that we can be strong and courageous in You. Thank You that we need not fear nor panic, for You go before us and will not leave us nor fail us. Forgive us for our fearfulness when we face the unknown. Teach us to trust You more, for You alone are worthy of all of our trust. Show us how to love others so that they may see Your strength and courage in us, as it is provided by You alone. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we choose to trust You to be our courage and strength, knowing that You go before us and remain with us in all things and at all times. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. – Proverbs 11:25

As Joshua’s life was drawing to a close, he gathered together the leaders of Israel and admonished them with words of warning and wisdom. He reminded them of God’s faithfulness to them, and of the promises that were present if they would continue to walk in all of the Lord’s ways. “Be very strong; be careful to obey all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, without turning aside to the right or to the left.” – (Joshua 23:6)

 

For us, Jesus fulfilled the Law, yet we are still charged with much of the same. We are called to be strong in the Lord, and to not turn away from His will for our lives. Our strength to stay the course is not innately ours, but rather comes from Christ when we seek Him as our help and our hope. May we go forth this day encouraged in the Lord’s strength, to stay the course to which we are called.

 

Be strong in the Lord,To Stay the Course

and choose to obey;

no turning aside,

from His path, don’t stray.

For we have been called,

equipped and made strong;

to do all He asks,

for our whole life long.

May we ever seek,

the God of all grace;

and serve the Lord well,

’til we see His face.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that our strength comes from You alone. Thank You that our ability to stay the course to which we are called is not our own, but rather a gift that is given by You when we seek You. Forgive us for attempting to muscle our way through things on our own, and help us to completely depend on You. Teach us to trust You more, as You are the Source that is safe and secure. Lead us to love well, so that many may be encouraged to follow after You. Be exalted O God, as we stay the course to which we are called in the strength that You provide. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

Listen… be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. – Proverbs 23:19

In life, we are assured there will be change. Seasons change, people change, and circumstances change. Our certainty is found in Christ. As the Lord calls us into new seasons, it is easy for fear to creep in. Though change is inevitable, it is a space of uncertainty, and anything unknown tends to bring uneasiness. God does not call us into the new and then just expect us to give it a go on our own. He promises to be present, and provides what we need, as we need it, to successfully navigate the new. The same words God gave to Joshua and the Israelites as they were preparing to enter the new of the promised land, are still applicable to each of us today as we walk in obedience to all that God is asking of us.

 

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” – (Joshua 1:9)

 

May we rise up in His strength and courage, overcoming fear and discouragement, as we hold fast to the promise that God will remain with us wherever we go.

 

Be of good courage,Courage for Change

in seasons of change;

for God has promised,

our hope He’s made plain.

No matter what comes,

or where we need go;

Christ will be present,

this truth we can know.

Be strong without fear,

for He is our strength;

He’ll go where we go,

each height, depth and length.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You grant us strength and courage to overcome fear and discouragement, and You remain with us wherever we go. Thank You that You are faithful to Your promises, and Your love endures forever. Forgive us for allowing fear and discouragement to dull us to Your presence, and teach us to trust You more, so that we will be ever aware of Your nearness, regardless of our circumstances. Lead us to love others with the same relentlessness that You love each of us. May many come into a saving relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we rise up in strength and courage and go forward without fear, as we face every change that comes our way. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine upon us. – Psalm 67:1

Battles are a customary occurrence in our everyday lives, as we seek to faithfully follow Christ. At times, the Lord will call us to rise up and march into battle, and other times, the battle will seem to bombard us from every side. Regardless of how we find ourselves in the midst of the fight, the Lord is good and promises to be present. Just as He was with Joshua and the Israelites as He was leading them to move into the territory of those much larger and stronger than them, He assured them of His promises and His presence. Do not be afraid of them, the Lord your God Himself will fight for you. – (Deuteronomy 3:22)

 

Though these words were spoken to the Israelites, God still does the same for us as we walk into the places where He is calling us to go. When the battle before us become more than we can bear, our God is with us, fighting for us, so we need not fear. It is a struggle to remember this in the heat of the battle, but as we turn our eyes toward Christ, we recognize just how present and faithful He is, despite the action around us. May we place our hearts and hands in His, as we give God all of our fears and allow Him to fight on our behalf, in the battles before us.

 

Standing in battle,Bold in Battle

He calls us to rise;

to seek and to trust,

place our faith in Christ.

No matter the fight,

the Lord is still good;

His presence promised,

and hope understood.

For we will not fight,

nor stand on our own;

our God is for us,

He’ll make His strength known.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You are for us and not against us. Thank You that You are with us and that You fight for us, so we need not fear. Thank You that no matter what lies before us, You are far greater. Forgive us for our fearfulness when we see the battle before us, and grant us eyes to see You in the midst of whatever lies ahead. Teach us to trust You more, so that we will run to You, our strength and our shield. Lead us to love others in such a way, that they too, may come to know the presence and help that is found in You alone. May many choose to follow You, Lord. Be exalted O God, as we become bold in the battles because we trust in You. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. – 2 Corinthians 3:5

 

At the end of his life, when the Israelites had entered into the promise land, Joshua reminded the people of the Lord’s ongoing faithfulness. After reviewing all that God had done, Joshua told them that they had to make a choice. Choose to serve the Lord with all that they are, or walk away. “If you decide that it’s a bad thing to worship God, then choose a god you’d rather serve – and do it today. Choose one of the gods your ancestors worshiped from the country beyond The River, or one of the gods of the Amorites, on whose land you’re now living. As for me and my family, we’ll worship GOD.” – (Joshua 24:15, The Message)

 

Each one of us comes to a point in life where we must choose whom we will serve. We might not consciously make the choice, but we either choose God, or we choose the things of this world. Where our priorities lie, are excellent indicators as to where our heart is aligned. Are we serving God, or self?

 

Look all around,Whom Will You Serve

miracles made known.

Whom will you serve?

Is your heart your own?

One way brings life,

the other, sure end;

are you willing,

on Him to depend?

Great is the price,

to trust and obey;

yet far greater,

our promised one day.

Presence for now,

hope for forever;

He will not leave,

or forsake, ever.

For me, it’s clear,

there’s no turning back;

I’ll serve the Lord,

wherever I’m at.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You give us the freedom of choice. Thank You that You love us so much, that You give us a free will, and You are willing to allow us to walk our own way. Thank You that You receive us with open arms when we are ready to run to You, and that You embrace us and cover us with Your grace. Forgive us for thinking that there is any other way to live, aside from total surrender to You. Teach us to trust You completely in all things and at all times. May we love and serve with all that we are, just as You do for us. Let those who are looking, find the peace of Your presence and the hope that is held in You alone. May our every word and deed reflect Your radiance. Be exalted, Lord God. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

For it is commendable if a man bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because he is conscious of God. – I Peter 2:19

 

 

 

 

After Moses had died and Joshua had been given charge to lead the Israelites into the promise land, the Lord gave Joshua a God-sized pep talk.  Three times, the Lord told Joshua to “Be strong and courageous.” (Joshua 1:6, 7 & 9)  God also instructed him to “Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.  Do not let this Book of the Law depart from you mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it.  then you will be prosperous and successful.” (Joshua 1:7-8)

The primary points presented, are that strength, courage and obedience come from knowing and following God and His word.  To know God’s law, we need to spend time in His word.  As we study scripture, He reveals more of Himself unto us, and empowers us to live life accordingly, by His Spirit.   Though this may not lead to success by the world’s standards, if we follow God and His ways, we are a success in His eyes.  Ultimately, His is the only opinion that lasts forever, so it is the only one that we should allow to be of concern.

Strength and courage,Strength and Courage

to these we are called;

not on our own,

by His grace installed.

Obedience,

faithful in pursuit;

ever seeking,

what the Lord would do.

We meditate,

both by day and night;

to know God’s word,

to pursue what’s right.

This is success,

to our God, not man;

in God alone,

our salvation plan.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You grant us strength and courage to know and follow You.  Thank You that You made the way for us to enter into a lasting relationship with You, and that our fears and failures do not hinder our opportunities for the future.  Thank You that You forgive and free us from our former follies, and fuel us to move forward in our faith.  Forgive us for our fearfulness, or for not wholeheartedly pursuing You.  Teach us to trust You more, and keep discouragement far from us.  Thank You that You are with us wherever we go, and that You love us without limits.  Help us to love as You love, and may many come to know You as a result.  Be glorified as we walk in obedience unto You.  Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

Listen… be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. – Proverbs 23:19

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