Posted on May 15, 2020 by Catey Stover in Victory Call
The Lord your God is giving you rest and is giving you this land….But you shall pass before your brethren armed, all your mighty men of valor, and help them, until the Lord has given your brethren rest, as He gave you, and they also have taken possession of the land which the Lord your God is giving them. Then you shall return to the land of your possession and enjoy it, which Moses the Lord’s servant gave you on this side of the Jordan toward the sunrise. (Joshua 1:13-15)
What verses command your attention and rend your heart? Heart-gripping Scriptures evoke such responses as they access where our personal experience and empathic awareness of others’ pain, struggles and needs intersect. This Spirit-wrought understanding and concern fuel the fires of agape love generating effective and timely Spirit-empowered action. We can be someone’s miracle or answer to prayer. Wow. Let that sink in!
After Moses died and God raised up Joshua to lead Israel, two and a half of the tribes were settled on the one side of the Jordan River. Their families were experiencing a season of provision and rest. What comes to mind when you hear that word? Health and vitality? Financial security? Loved ones prospering? Time alone? Exotic vacations? Contentment and satisfaction? Inner quiet and stillness? Unshakeable faith?
For these tribes the word rest was part of a prerequisite for a job assignment: God wanted them to F-I-G-H-T. A bit unexpected, huh? God gave them personal rest so that they could war on behalf of their brethren. They had a privileged part in securing rest for those who still needed to cross the Jordan to reach their Promised Land, but notice the injunction in Joshua 1:14. They were to go armed; otherwise, they’d be useless at best – a casualty at worst.
This passage in Joshua pierced my heart the first time I read it. It still does. Every time. I expect it always will. 1 Corinthians 12 talks about the Body of Christ: That’s you, me and all those who have trusted Christ as Savior. We are one body. His body. And when one part suffers, the whole body does. And just like the brain (head) unleashes the body’s immunity cascade to fight off attacks and bodily invasions, Christ signals parts of His body to do just that in response to our spiritual enemy and those who do his bidding.
This is why we do what we do here at America’s Keswick. On a daily basis, those who don’t know Christ (and war-torn siblings who do) enter this property looking for the rest that they so desperately long for and that only God provides. Many still need to see that visible representation – God “with skin”- to be able to trust Him in new spheres and at new levels in order to experience the rest He provides now while waiting for the one that is to come.
So how are things with you in this regard? If you’re experiencing God’s rest – will you steward it and sacrifice what He is calling you to in order to help the restless: time, money, energy? If you’re restless, will you come to Him, and let Him be your resting place? He longs to work in you, then through you.
Written by Melissa Smith: Melissa Smith is the Women’s ENRICH Counselor at America’s Keswick. She has the privilege and honor of ministering to the Colony men’s wives and girlfriends, the Barbara’s Place women, and community women who God brings to America’s Keswick for help or care. She and Bill, her husband of 20 years, have four grown, wonderful adopted children. Her fervent desire is to point women to Christ and His sufficiency, provision, and promises.
Think About This: “There are many of us that are willing to do great things for the Lord, but few of us are willing to do little things.” – D.L. Moody
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and [i]mammon.” –Matthew 6:24
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the doctrinal and theological views held by America’s Keswick.