Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast. There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee. ~Joshua 1:3-5
Today is the start of a New Year! Regardless of what kind of year the previous one was, today we start a new one. There might be feelings that we could have done a lot more last year, or feelings that we met and exceeded the goals we set. Either way, a New Year is a time when we take to task “old things that are passed away; all things are become new.” In our first God Morning for 2018, we see a word of encouragement and challenge to break new ground. Breaking new ground is a way of saying we will do something innovative, initiate new venture, and accomplish something not done before. Let us see this encouraging challenge from God to Joshua to break new ground.
We see a successor LEADER.
Moses had passed away and Joshua was God’s new leader. Joshua was the servant to Moses for the previous forty years. He was in a capacity that he was comfortable and very familiar with. Now that Moses was gone, Joshua felt grief and inadequacy. Most of us feel intimidated when new challenges and opportunities come to us. Like Joshua, we must assume a leadership role. Take responsibility now for the New Year. Take charge of the unfinished tasks from the previous year that rolled over to the New Year. Decide that this will be a year in which you will forge ahead by being ahead and not behind.
We see a substantial LAND.
God told Joshua that every place he walked upon was given to him. Then, God described the vastness of this possession. Can you imagine such a guarantee from God that wherever he walked, Joshua would claim that real estate? Yet, we forget that God gives us a similar promise for the journey of faith we have as pilgrims in this life. Take ownership this year in your Bible reading. Travel further in your Bible reading than you did in previous years. Journey on your knees in prayer, and pray for God to enlarge your coast and bless your paths. Walk more miles this coming year in service to the Lord and sowing the gospel seed. God told Joshua, “It’s yours; take it.” Realize that the faith walk opportunities are yours; take it!
We see a steadfast LORD.
Joshua may have felt overwhelmed at the challenge God gave him. However, God never gives us a challenge without the assurance of His blessing. God told Joshua, “There shall not any man be able to stand before thee all the days of thy life: as I was with Moses, so I will be with thee: I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” Just as God was faithful all the days of Moses, He promised to be faithful for all of Joshua’s days. God said, “I will not fail thee.” He was telling Joshua He would not disappoint him. He was not leading Joshua into a losing proposition. He also told Joshua, “I will not forsake thee.” Joshua was assured that he would not be abandoned or left to languish. As we enter the New Year, be encouraged that God does not set us up for failure or disappointment as well.
We see a successful LIFE.
Joshua was further encouraged to be strong and of a good courage more than once. He was admonished to not let God’s Word depart out of his life. He was told that he would have good success as long as he obeyed God’s Word and made it his supreme authority for his life. As we consider Ps. 1:1-3 and Joshua 1:8, we can have a successful year as long as we make the Word of God preeminent in our lives. When we get to the end of Joshua’s life, he and the people conquered much land and acquired the land of promise. His faith in God and courage to step out led to a very successful life.
Don’t let your fears and past failures keep you from having your best year ever. Break new ground by following the example of Joshua.
Have a blessed God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Genesis 1-3