Seven years of total domination. Seven nations conquered. At least 31 kings defeated. Approximately 10,000 square miles of choice real estate claimed. They were vastly outnumbered, under equipped and voted least likely to conquer some of the most barbaric armies in history. Most historians, unless they've taken the time to study Hebrew history, would never associate these facts with the nation of Israel, but this is exactly what transpired in the lives of God's people and it is all chronicled in the book of Joshua. Joshua documents for us the journey of this often forgotten nation, as they exit the wilderness and enter the promised land of Canaan. As we study their journey into a land "flowing with milk and honey", a land that was promised to Abraham, we too want to embark on our own journey out of the wilderness and into the land that God is waiting to give us.
Don't miss this Sunday as Pastor Avery, from Common Ground Church, will be preaching from Joshua 3. His focus will be on the challenge of crossing over the Jordan River (fear and doubt) and leaving our past behind, so that we can experience the promised land (Canaan) that awaits us on the other side. I would encourage you to take some time over the next few days to read Joshua 3 and ask God to show you what current challenge is hindering you from seeing the future that God has for you.
Over the next 3 Sundays, you will hear from Pastor Avery, Pastor Norm and Larry, our council chairman. Please be praying for these men as they seek the Holy Spirit for guidance as they prepare to preach God's message to his people. Also, our family is leaving tomorrow (Saturday) morning for some much needed rest and relaxation. During my absence, if you hear of any congregational needs, please inform Cheryle Douglas in the church office.
See you in a couple weeks!
As the memory of Easter Sunday fades I can't help but wonder, what must have been going through the minds of those early followers of Jesus. Followers who had committed to travel with him all around the known world, listening to him preach and watching him perform miracles. Followers who watched in disbelief as Jesus was arrested, tortured and put to death on a cross. Followers who had given up hope, only to be overcome with joy over his resurrection, but then, as Jesus ascended into heaven, left to ponder life without their Savior.
Can you at all relate to the roller-coaster of emotions this small band of Christians had been subjected too in such a short period of time? If we're honest with ourselves, sometimes life's challenges can be overwhelming. You want to remain faithful. You want to keep up. But life happens and you just have no fight left in you.
The book of Joshua is in the Bible for seasons like the one I just described. Join us for the next several weeks, as we walk with the nation of Israel on their journey from the arid desert of the wilderness to the fertile fields of the promised land. Along the way, you may be forced to ask the question, "how would my life be different if I put aside fear and followed God's vision for my life?" God has a "promised-land" vision for all of us, but it's up to us to take the first step.
In preparation for Sunday, I want to encourage you to read the first 2 chapters in the book of Joshua, especially focusing on verse 9. Also, our theme verse for this series is taken from Joshua 21:43-45, where we read....
"Thus the Lord gave to Israel all the land that he swore to give to their fathers. And they took possession of it, and they settled there. And the Lord gave them rest on every side just as he had sworn to their fathers. Not one of all their enemies had withstood them, for the Lord had given all their enemies into their hands. Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass."
See you Sunday.