Have you ever experienced a time in your life when it seems as though everything around you has just fallen part. I mean, literally everything! No matter how you try to fix it, or plan something, or help someone, or deal with an issue, it just seems like nothing is working in your favor. As a result you feel anxious, fearful, and like crawling into a whole and covering up with a blanket and perhaps, a bucket of butter pecan ice cream! Yea, that’s my favorite, lol.
But, life doesn’t always afford us the opportunity to just go and step away, cry in our closets and shut the world outside. There are times when we must push forward, even when it seems like nothing is working. Joshua had that experience in chapter 8, as he comes off of the heals of dealing with the deceit of Achon and his disobedience to God, which spilled over into the camp of the COI (Children of Israel). They not only loss a member of their tribe, but they lost others from the defeat at AI. I am pretty sure Joshua was devastated over this situation. How would they recover from this? Would the COI even want to continue to fight after such a defeat. How would he rally the troops and keep them motivated to push through this set back. He began to wonder if the enemies of AI would take this blow as a sign of weakness on their part, and attack them. How would he be able to deal with that, with not having as many men as before.
His mind turned and tossed. Worry began to engulf and surround him like a wall. He could hear the whispers of the COI, wondering if he could continue to lead them. What was he to do, his heart filled with PANIC! Then, perhaps in the silence of his tent, when no one was around, God whispered to Joshua and said, “Don’t be afraid and don’t PANIC! Take the whole army with you, and march against AI! See, I am handing over to you the king of AI, along with his people, city and land“, Joshua 8:1.
See, this was a serious time for Joshua. God understood the position he was in, having come off the hills of this horrible situation. But, the situation was not going to stop God from fulfilling his promise to Joshua and the COI. In fact, it helped to encourage them not to do what they had so often felt tempted to do, which is to take matters into their own hands, or give up at the sign of trouble. God wanted to teach Joshua to preserver, even in the face of struggle, and perceived defeat. Keep pushing through, and don’t succumb to panic and fear. When we allow the emotions of panic and fear to take over, it causes us to make unwise decisions, and trust our FLESH more than the FAITH we need to have to follow the directives of GOD. God gave Joshua a clear command, a plan of action, and assured him of the outcome. He reminded Joshua of chapter 1:9’s conversation when He encouraged him to “Be Strong and of a Good Courage, don’t be afraid or discouraged. I am with you wherever you go.”
When you find yourself at a place in life when you feel lost, full of panic and fear, take a step back, spend some time with God in prayer, wait for that still small voice, that answer from the Lord, on your plan of action, what you should do (which sometimes may mean nothing at all). Watch Him assure your outcome, because His plan has always been for you to win. Might take longer than you expected, or come from a direction you have never seen before, but it will come.
Psalms 27:14, “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.
2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”