April 15, 2023
“Now Joshua was old, advanced in years. And the Lord said to him: ‘You are old, advanced in years, and there remains very much land yet to be possessed.”
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“Now Joshua was old, advanced in years. And the Lord said to him: ‘You are old, advanced in years, and there remains very much land yet to be possessed. This is the land that yet remains…’” Joshua 13:1-2a (NKJV)
In chapters 13 and 14, the Lord quickly turned Israel’s focus from past victories to unconquered land. The first thing the Lord does is strengthen Israel’s leader, Joshua. Aging warriors are more pitied than remembered. At a point where Joshua may have “felt” unable to fight, God declares him “able.”
Personally, I love how God begins by acknowledging Joshua’s obvious physical limitations. “You’re old, advanced in years.” I’ve heard it said that you’re only as young as you feel. God was letting Joshua know He was aware of his advanced years. But more important than Joshua’s age was God’s promise of victory!
“Don’t stop!” Those were the words of my college Cross Country coach, Jay Flannigan. I had been resting an injury for a week when it came time for our meet at Murray State University. Because I didn’t feel able to run, my coach convinced me to run the first 2 miles of a six-mile race. At the end of 2 miles, I was in 1st place, so coach yelled out, “Don’t stop! I’ll see you at the next mile marker!” I yelled out, “I’m hurting! He responded, “You’re winning!”
For the next 4 miles, Coach Flannigan and I had the same discussion at each mile marker. I wanted to quit at the end of every mile, and Coach kept saying, “You can’t quit while you’re in 1st place!” That day, not only did I win the race, but I set a course record.
Perhaps, you’re tired of running the race of “Faith.” Maybe you feel like you’re too old or too young to rise to whatever occasion the Lord is calling you. Keep running! Keep on believing! It’s the only way to win.
God will go before us when we invest our faith in action. We have faith because we have a promise. We gain understanding of His promise when we commit to study His word. Then, when we pray, “How should I employ Your Word in my life?” He gives us a plan, HIS PLAN, which guarantees success in what He has called us.
True success is not a matter of age or lack thereof. Success, in God’s eyes, is when His people move out in faith. He provides the calling and equipping, but we must respond in obedience before He will provide the increase.
©Steve Wiggins 2021