“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous.
Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged;
for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
– Joshua 1:9
It happened again. In fact, it is one phenomenon that has happened to me for as long as I can remember. With regularity, even when I am not specifically asking, seeking, knocking, He will be there. His words will come to me, same ones, popping up here and there in a variety of interesting ways. It happens to the point that if I would ignore them, it would just be silly on my part; or worse, I would be ignoring the truth that He is reaching out to give me.
The words above from Joshua have been sent to me time and time again. Always perfect timing. Sometimes in unlikely places.
(Reassurance) ~ Be strong. Have courage.
Do not be afraid. Do not be discouraged.
(Reminder)~ For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go!
Now, what could be better than this?
Maybe that He FINDS me with this reminder makes it even sweeter.
The fact that I don’t have to go looking for reassurance.
Understanding that He already knows I’m going to need this and He offers it to me at the perfect moment.
Last summer, I attended my first writers’ conference. It was a tremendously moving experience, impacting me in ways far beyond my imagination! I did not know all of the creative moves that God would begin to make in my life through this conference, but definitely knew I was intended to be there.
Having never even heard of it before, even the way the conference itself ‘found me’ ( No, I wasn’t looking for a conference) and all of the puzzle pieces that fit together in order to get me there were clearly planned and fitted, and not by me.
Once there, I continued to receive one confirmation after another that my heavenly Father designed an experience just for me. Meeting people I needed to meet, taking in excellent workshops and amazing speakers, and the move of God during worship, all of these were a perfect illumination of light for my path.
The Proverbs 31 Ministry Team and She Speaks Conference organizers had created a beautiful worshipful atmosphere, but one seemingly small thing spoke to me more than any of the many other thoughtful details of the conference. At every place at each table for the opening session, there was a tiny scroll rolled up and tied with a little ribbon. The team leader shared that each name on the list for this conference had been prayed for before the conference and that scriptures had been written on these scrolls for each of us. The team had prayed that God would reveal Himself to us there; His purposes, His plan. They prayed that each woman would receive the scripture God intended for her there. I couldn’t help but be touched by the genuine love and care involved in this act of service.
The anticipation caused me to consider my God. I expected the perfect words of scripture. I knew God was in this and wanted to tell me something very special in that exact moment. As we were instructed to open the scrolls, you could hear the soft expressions of each woman around the table. “Ah!” “Oh my.” “Yes, this is for me!” Contented smiles spread over every face. Tears fell softly and many bowed their heads, humbled by such love. There was a knowing we all understood for that moment. Many of us strangers, but all sisters, we shared the belief that our Father uses anything and everything to reach us. He goes out of His way to let us know He is with us. And while we may think we are finding Him, all the time He is constantly finding us.
And this was my scripture (surprised?) Joshua 1:9. What a sweet & thoughtful Father!
He knew I was a little afraid, intimidated by the whole scene.
He knew I would become discouraged, question why I was even there and worry about my lack of ability.
He knew my confidence would be shaking.
And He wanted to remind me that I was exactly where He intended for me to be. And that He, Himself, was with me there.
As always, with me, wherever I go.
Today, as I was reorganizing the Christmas aftermath, I picked up a beautiful new devotional that was given to my husband and me as a gift. I went to place it by our coffeemaker thinking we would share it best there every morning. I had many ideas moving through my mind, anticipating the new year; sensing changes that are good and important for a life committed to serving God, contemplating if I’m moving in the right direction…
And just as I was about to doubt my inner ‘grumbles’ (as my friend Christa likes to call them)! Yes, right before I had a chance to retreat to the corner of logic that can kill the faith of dreams, you know what happened, don’t you?
I opened the little book to glance through, and saw the very first day’s devotion with the scripture, Joshua 1:9.
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged; for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
And that is exactly the reminder I needed, exactly when I needed it.
Know that God will be finding you in new and spectacular ways this year! Bring on 2015!
With Love & Belief,
God’s glory is all that matters.