Rise to the Challenge

The gym I belong to used to issue monthly challenges. Even though I didn’t always participate in them, I appreciated the challenge because I knew it would push me outside of my comfort zone and would help me grow in my strength. The purpose of a good challenge is to help us grow. If the challenge is too great, then we may be quick to give in and move on to something we can handle. How is it we can rise to the challenges ahead? By rising to the challenge in God’s strength.
 
When God lead the Israelites to the promise land, the challenge was just beginning. The Israelites still needed to take possession of the land the Lord their God was giving them. Yes God had promised them the land, but it wasn’t empty. Instead they needed to rise to the challenge.
 
In Joshua, the Lord calls forth a new generation of Leadership. Joshua and Israel are encouraged to be strong and courageous as they prepare for challenge ahead. With each conquest, Israel starts living into God’s promises through their faith. God doesn’t just give them the land, no, they must rise to the challenge in faith, learning to trust God and recognize that God is fighting on their behalf. It is a story of continued faith in God, recognizing God as the source of their strength.
 
We all have our challenges. Rather than pulling back or giving in, what would it look like if we started rising to the challenge in faith? What if we started fighting our battles with our prayers? What would it mean for us to find encouragement and hope in knowing that God is with us? It is time for us to rise to the challenge. It is time for us to discover God’s strength.
 

In Christ’s Service,

Pastor Gordon Deuel