I have got to share this with you from my favorite book in the bible, Joshua.
The Children of Israel have just won the battle at Jericho. They had been obedient to God’s commandment to walk around the city walls one time each day for six days and then on the seventh, seven times. If you understand God’s methods you will know the lesson for us today is…”Battles are won in and at a place of rest.” So often the Children of Israel were asked to do “foolish” things to gain the victory over their enemies and today it would seem quite odd for you to overcome that sickness in your body, the turbulence around you or the lack of economic progress in a place of rest.
But rest you must.
Now the Battle for Ai, followed Joshua’s victory at Jericho. His spies and commanders were so confident that they could take the city, they recommended only two or three thousand men would be needed to overcome. Similarly after the war you just won, you are expecting that this next obstacle before you would be a piece of cake and in actuality it should be and can be. Be aware, don’t get caught like the Israelites did.
Their instructions were to destroy everything they found in Jericho. This had been a wealthy city and there was much gold, silver and fine linens within its walls. It was the first victory won in the Promised Land. Imagine God had told them they would harvest crops they did not plan, live in houses they never built and just prosper in a land that He had given to their forefather Abraham centuries before. So it would seem logical that they grab ahold of the promise literally but the first had to be given to use as God commanded. God called it the devoted things. Just like we are to tithe a tenth of what we have or make unto God, Jericho was considered the tithe. Achan got greedy and took some of the things he found and hid them in the family’s tent.
When the Israelites went to battle, men died and they were suddenly on the run for their lives. After Joshua and the priests went to God about the matter, they were charged to find the guilty party who had disobeyed God’s orders. Eventually Achan and his family lost their lives and everything they owned was set ablaze.
Don’t get cocky after your victory at Jericho that you suddenly feel you have arrived, slack off or keep something for yourself that God has said should be concecrated unto Him. Your next victory is going to be an easy one and the ladder you will use to overcome it, will be your continued obedience to God’s plan for your life.
Let not your heart be troubled, believe what God has told you and you will prosper. You will make it. Stay focused. Stay Strong. Do not relinquish your joy.