After the death of Moses, God called faithful Joshua and told him in Joshua 1:3-6 "Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you. As I said to Moses. “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."
God had said, "I will give you Canaan." Joshua and Caleb believed God and became visionaries rather than men with a hopeless attitude. They left a legacy that we are still reading about today.
When the twelve spies investigated the land of Canaan, ten became very disappointed at what they saw with their eyes. They said, "There are giants in the land of Canaan." They completely dismissed what God had said, "I will give you the land." They did encounter some battles along the journey. However, God did promise them the land and also promised to be with them. You can be sure that God always keeps His promises.
The Israelites saw only with one set of eyes, the natural. However, Joshua and Caleb saw beyond the natural and remembered what God had promised. The two (Joshua and Caleb) said "we are well able." Two saw the size of their God and ten saw the size of men; two saw the solution, but ten saw the problem; two saw the appointment; however, ten saw it as a disappointment.
Joshua and Caleb were willing to go against the majority to believe God's Word.
Years later God granted only these two men permission to go into the promise land (Canaan). God will always keep His promises, why can't we just trust Him! Visionary people like Joshua and Caleb see with two sets of eyes, the physical and also the spiritual. A heart and mind given to God can change your focus onto Him and not your surroundings.
Where is Your Focus?
Scripture: Here are the Words of our Lord in Matthew 7:2: "For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." We will reap what we sow (Gal. 6:7-8). If you are swift and harsh in judging others, then you will receive the same from others.
Reflection: “Wouldn't it be amazing if every Christian actually took time to judge themselves before judging anyone else?
In Matthew 7:4-5, Jesus says, “Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye." A good judge will not fail to judge himself.
As you know, we cannot pick and choose the verses we want to make a case when studying the Bible. I have to collect all the verses I can on a given subject and then see how it reads in the context of the passage. For example, Matthew 7:1, it reads, “Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye.”
Jesus tells us to examine ourselves first before we look at others. By focusing on ourselves, I firmly believe we can easily understand who we are and easily point out the weak area and eventually can encourage and motivate our self to refine our attitude. Our character and relationship with other people help us to spread the love and kindness of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We can be too quick to find the mistakes of others and point out what they are doing wrong; however, does this make us feel better if we look at others instead of looking internally within ourselves? If we would just talk to God first and let Him show us our path of life, I think we would be much more concerned about what He wants us to do than always finding fault with others.
As God's Child, if we submit to Him, we would not have to live with a critical and judgmental spirit, which means that embedded within are some internal problems that must be confronted, prayed about to deliver us from bondage. We all have to watch being judgmental for it will quench the Holy Spirit in our lives.
Prayer: Father God, let us see through your eyes and not through our own flesh, then our perspective on life would be much more discerning. We ask for you to reveal wisdom to us this day.
In Jesus Name,
I can understand how fear can grip you and try to cause you to lose your faith. That is Satan’s business seeking to paralyze our faith walk with God.
It was nine years ago that I was faced with pain I had never experienced before, we were praying but the pain continued to persist. One day I told my husband to take me to a Doctor, It was too painful and I could not take it any longer. In explaining to the Doctor all that was going on in my body He questioned me and then did the preliminary examination. He did some testing and said the nurse would let me know the results.
A few days later I got a call and the nurse said, “Joanie we need you to come in.” She tried to explain in terms that I could understand but to tell you it frightened me and confused me even more.
They were concerned and wanted me to come back in, it was not good; the pain was not going away.
The enemy did not waste anytime in seeking to minimize my faith in God. Fear gripped me so powerfully that I wondered how I was going to have the faith to overcome this unwelcomed news.
The pain helped to intensify my fears. Everything that was given to me was hardly reducing the pain to where I could feel comfortable.
I was scheduled to go back to the Doctor for more testing; I remember asking my daughter if she would go with me since my husband could not make the appointment that day. As it was getting closer to the appointment my faith was getting stronger through prayer. Also, my pain after weeks of hurting was subsiding.
When the Doctor walked into the room I ask if he believed in miracles, he said he did. As he was cutting off more tissue for testing, I just kept saying you are not going to find anything God has healed me. I will have to admit there was a voice that was trying to over power what I was saying, but I would not submit to it.
I was asked after the last appointment to go down stairs and check into the hospital. I talked myself into going to admissions. As I was sitting there talking to the lady in the office, all of a sudden I just got up told her I was not going to do this and walked out.
I knew I did not have the faith and strength on my on to walk through this difficult time but God would help me though it. I told my husband I am not going into the hospital.
A few days latter the nurse had not called me or asked why I had not followed through with what the Physician wanted me to do, and she had called me about the results of the last procedure done in the his office. I called the nurse and said, ‘Have you gotten any results back on Joan Buchanan.’ Here is what she said, “Joan the Doctor and I have just now looked at your test results and we have been trying to put our heads together on this, all the test are normal.” Well the rest is history; I praised God with her on the phone and continued to praise God for His faithfulness and healing power.
I would not describe myself as a mighty woman of faith and power, but I do have a mighty God who can give us the faith and power to overcome any obstacle that the enemy throws in front of us
A sobbing little girl stood near a small church from which she had been turned away because it was "too crowded."
"I can't go to Sunday School." she sobbed to the pastor as he walked by. Seeing her shabby, unkept appearance, the pastor guessed the reason and, taking her by the hand, took her inside and found a place for her in the Sunday school class. The child was so happy that they found room for her that she went to bed that night thinking of the children who have no place to worship.
Some two years later, this child lay dead in one of the poor tenement buildings. Her parents called for the kind-hearted pastor who had befriended their daughter to handle the final arrangements. As her poor little body was being moved, a worn and crumpled red purse was found which seemed to have been rummaged from some trash dump. Inside was found 57 cents and a note, scribbled in childish handwriting, which read: "This is to help build the little church bigger so more children can go to Sunday School." For two years she had saved for this offering of love.
When the pastor tearfully read that note, he knew instantly what he would do. Carrying this note and the cracked, red pocketbook to the pulpit he told the story of her unselfish love and devotion. He challenged his deacons to get busy and raise enough money for the larger building.
But the story does not end there...
A newspaper learned of the story and published it. It was read by a wealthy realtor who offered them a parcel of land worth many thousands. When told that the church could not pay so much, he offered to sell it to the little church for 57 cents.
Church members made large donations. Checks came from far and wide. Within five years the little girl's gift had increased to 250,000.00---a huge sum for that time (near the turn of the century). Her unselfish love had paid large dividends.
When you are in the city of Philadelphia, look up Temple Baptist Church, with a seating capacity of 3,300. And be sure to visit Temple University, where thousands of students are educated. Have a look, too, at the Good Samaritan Hospital and at a Sunday School building which houses hundreds of beautiful children, built so that no child in the area will ever need to be left outside during Sunday school time.
In one of the rooms of this building may be seen the picture of the sweet face of the little girl whose 57 cents, so sacrificially saved, made such a remarkable history. Alongside of it is a portrait of her kind pastor, Dr. Russell H. Conwell, author of the book, "Acres of Diamonds"
This is a true story, which goes to show WHAT GOD CAN DO WITH 57
Joanie has been in ministry for more than 40 years as a Bible teacher, author, and media evangelist. Joanie shares the love and adoration that she has for Jesus Christ through teaching and speaking to diverse groups across the country. She has ministered in churches, Bible study groups, county jails, state prisons, juvenile centers, nursing homes, hospitals, parks, as well as hosting several radio and television programs.