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Monday, May 20, 2013

Meditate On and Be Guided By God's Word

This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it; for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success.
-- Joshua 1:8 WEB

With the death of Moses, Joshua prepared the children of Israel to enter Canaan. God counseled Joshua by telling him to be strong and courageous, to meditated on God's commands and to do them.

The people knew Joshua was the right man to lead them. In the past, Joshua had proven his trust in God. When Israel's twelve spies were sent to quietly explore Canaan prior to the Israelites' entry, most of the spies were afraid the Canaanites would defeat them, even going so far as to describe the inhabitants as giants. Only Joshua and Caleb expressed confidence that God would assure their success in taking the land (see Numbers 13-14). All of Israel must have remembered the trust of Joshua and Caleb on that day, because their presence afterward was a constant reminder. After forty years in the wilderness, Joshua and Caleb were the only ones from their generation that God permitted to live and to enter the promised land.

But as God passed the mantel of leadership to Joshua. Joshua must have had doubts in his own leadership skills. He must have worried whether he would always do the right thing. God bucked him up, reminding him to be strong. But more importantly, God directed Joshua to the foundation on which Joshua must build everything that comes after--God's very words.

Don't let the wording in your Bible translation mislead you. This passage is not a prediction of what is to come. Rather, it is a command from God to Joshua of what he must do and what will result if he does it. Think of the passage like this.

"Do not, for one minute, let My words, out of your speech or your actions. Meditate and reflect on them day and night. Base all that you do on all I have given you. If you do, you will prosper and have success."

Joshua took seriously God's advice and he was successful because of it, leading the Israelites to take the land God had promised to Abraham. God's advice to Joshua is also excellent advise for us. Do you want to prosper and have success? Meditate on and be guided by God's Word.

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Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Daily Prescription

Rejoice in the Lord always! Again I will say, "Rejoice!" Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. In nothing be anxious, but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.
-- Philippians 4:4-7 WEB

Here is a prescription for living, written by the Apostle Paul:

All day, every day and in every thing, we should celebrate our Lord Jesus Christ--really celebrate Him! We should make it clear to all that we support them and want to help them in any way that we can, remembering that Jesus is with us always, and that He is returning soon--perhaps today!

We should not fret or worry about anything. Instead, we should pray. All of our joy, our sorrow, our concern, and our gratitude should be conveyed to God in an ongoing conversation of prayer. In this way, the fullness of God's peace will come to us, protecting and directing all that we feel and all that we think, with Jesus Christ at the center of our lives.

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