Taking The Land

“So Joshua took all the land; the mountain country, all the south, all the land of Goshen, the lowland, and the Jordan plains – the mountains of Israel and its lowlands, (Joshua 11:16)
from mount Halak and the assent to Seir, even as far as Baal Gad in the valley of Lebanon below Mount Hermon. (Joshua 11:17)
Joshua made war a long time with all those kings. (Joshua 11:18)
There was not a city that made peace with the children of Israel, except the Hivites, the inhabitants of Gibeon. All the others they took in battle.” (Joshua 11:19)

Though chapter 11 of Joshua was a quick read, the reality of it lived out was much longer.

Lord, please prepare me and sustain me in the spiritual battles and warfare that happen everyday. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Like Oil and Water

There can be no peace
between good and evil
no making amends
no working things out.

Battles go on
and wars are fought
whether we realize
and like it or not.

Found Hidden

“But these five kings had fled and hidden themselves in a cave at Makkedah.” Joshua 10:16
“And it was told Joshua, saying, ‘The five kings have been found hidden in the cave at Makkedah’.” Joshua 10:17
“So Joshua said, ‘Roll large stones against the mouth of the cave, and set men by it to guard them’.” Joshua 10:18

I couldn’t help but notice the similarities of this situation to that of Jesus. These five kings went in alive, to come out and meet their deaths. Jesus, the One true King, went in dead, to come out risen and alive.

Jesus, thank You for entering the tomb of my heart and bringing me to life. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Out of the Dark

Hiding out in a cave
enveloped by the dark
hard to see past myself
without even a spark
until the Light compelled me
to step into its glow
and leave behind the dank dust
of yesterday’s false hold.

When Deceived

“But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai,
they worked craftily, and went and pretended to be ambassadors. (Joshua 9:3-4)
So Joshua made peace with them, and made a covenant with them, to let them live; and the rulers of the congregation swore to them. (Joshua 9:15)
And it happened at the end of three days, after they had made a covenant with them, that they heard that they were their neighbors who dwelt near them. (Joshua 9:16)
Then all the rulers said to all the congregation, ‘We have sworn to them by the Lord God of Israel; now therefore we may not touch them’.” (Joshua 9:19)

The children of Israel weren’t happy that the rulers had mistakenly made a covenant with a nearby people.

Oh Lord, I ask for grace when I’ve been deceived, in order to do what would please and honor You above my hurting pride. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Pleasing Him

Being made a fool of
over and over again
embarrassed and angry
wanting to exact revenge
but better pride be wounded
and we more humbly live
to please and honor
and give glory to Him.

All The Word

“And afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessings and the cursings, according to all that is written in the Book of the Law.” Joshua 8:34
“There was not a word of all that Moses had commanded which Joshua did not read before all the congregation of Israel, with the women, the little ones, and the strangers who were living among them.” Joshua 8:35

Joshua read all the words. He didn’t leave out the parts he thought might offend, or bore, or be misconstrued.

Lord, I thank You for Your word and desire to read it all . . .not just the parts that are easiest for me. And here’s a simple poem . . .

All Has Meaning

All the words were written
in another time, in another place

for all of us to hear
by His wisdom, by His grace

for this season, for this moment
when we need truth, when we need light

for His word all has meaning
all has breath, all has life.

Your Great Name

“O Lord, what shall I say when Israel turns its back before its enemies?” Joshua 7:8
“For the Canaanites and all the inhabitants of the land will hear of it, and surround us, and cut off our name from the earth. Then what will You do for Your great name?” Joshua 7:9

Joshua’s statement brings the saying, “it’s not about me” to mind.

Lord, we desire to glorify You today, and thank You for Jesus through Whom our sins are forgiven, and the Holy Spirit, Who indwells and guides us . . .for the sake of Your great name. And here’s a simple poem . . .

For Your Sake

Oh let us be willing
for the sake of Your great name
to lay aside the things of the world
and joyfully proclaim
that You alone are mighty
that only You can save
and so we stand in awe and wonder
at the glory of Your name.

Marching Orders

“Now Jericho was securely shut up because of the children of Israel; none went out and none came in.” Joshua 6:1

Often when we have a problem that’s blocking us from moving ahead, we let it run around and around in our heads, exhausting us. God had the children of Israel march around the problem instead.

Oh Lord, we praise and thank You that whenever problems occur that try to keep us from doing what You’ve asked us to do, it becomes yet another opportunity for You to show Yourself strong and mighty. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Our Jerichoes

The situation seems impossible
like a done deal
there’s no way in or out for us
our emotions sag and reel.

But God has a way when
problems make us feel small
and by His strength and power
He’ll be glorified through it all.

Take Off Your Shoes

“So He said, ‘No, but as Commander of the army of the Lord I have now come’. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped, and said to Him, ‘What does my Lord say to His servant’?” Joshua 5:14
“Then the Commander of the Lord’s army said to Joshua, ‘Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is holy’. And Joshua did so.” Joshua 5:15

I’m not sure if Joshua was expecting this to be the first thing the Lord would say to Him.

Lord, we desire to understand more about Your holiness. Please show us what attitude, behavior or habit we need to take off – as well as our shoes – when we come into Your presence and seek to hear Your voice. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Standing Holy

As I come into Your presence, Lord
to hear what You have to say

You show me I can’t enter in
just any old way

but must strip myself of the shoes I wear
that carry me around in pride

and any other lofty thing
that I harbor deep inside.

Standing in the Midst

“So the priests who bore the ark stood in the midst of the Jordan until everything was finished that the Lord had commanded Joshua to speak to the people, according to all that Moses had commanded Joshua; and the people hastened and crossed over.” Joshua 4:10
“Then it came to pass, when all the people had completely crossed over, that the ark of the Lord and the priests crossed over in the presence of the people.” Joshua 4:11

Once again God made the impossible possible for the children of Israel, as they crossed over the flooded Jordan on dry ground.

Thank You, Lord, for making a way for us to stand and walk through the flood of our situations that seek to knock us off our feet and keep us from You. And here’s a simple poem . . .

Through the Flood

Over the banks
dark waters rise
but You want us on
the other side
so You make a way
for us to cross
and no one drowns
no one’s lost.

Hiding The Spies

“And as soon as we heard these things our hearts melted; neither did there remain any more courage in anyone because of you, for the Lord your God, He is God in heaven above and on earth beneath.” Joshua 2:11

Rahab made important decisions that day. She hid the men of Israel, believing in the mightiness of their God. And she asked for the lives of her family to be saved.

Lord, as we believe You and hide Your word in our hearts, we are driven to ask that the lives of our families be saved. And here’s a simple poem . . .

May They Be Saved

Hide them, Lord, and protect them
from the evil one who prowls

draw them out and to You
from their usual crowd

soften their hearts and open their eyes
to You crucified out of love for them

help them confess and believe
You are the Son of God and man.

No Turning From It

“Only be strong and very courageous that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go.” Joshua 1:7

I read this as God saying the biggest challenge wouldn’t be the physical battles, but the inner battles to do as He said.

Oh Lord, we desire the strength and courage today to walk wherever total obedience to You takes us. And here’s a simple poem . . .

We Want To

Our obedience is born
out of love for You
and we have confidence in
Whom we trust too
Who gives us strength
to do what we should do
as we freely follow
simply because we want to.

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