God is here
March 23, 2020
It’s been a few months since the world became aware of the novel coronavirus. Thus far, the World Health Organization has reported approximately 335,000 confirmed cases worldwide and 15,000 related deaths. The ghostlike streets in many cities, talk of an economic recession, empty store shelves, and images of overrun and ill-equipped hospitals are reminding us that despite our impressive progress, we remain fragile creatures of limited knowledge and power. And whether we are ready or not, every now and again we will inevitably be confronted by situations that intimidate or overwhelm us. Thankfully we are not alone.
Throughout the Bible God repeatedly told his people not to fear because he was with them, and with his help they could meet any challenge. He gave Joshua, a seasoned military leader, this reassurance as he stood before the Jordan River faced with the intimidating prospect of being Moses’ successor and tasked with leading the poorly armed Israelites into battle (Josh. 1:1-9). It was a daunting task with enormous (and scary) consequences. Lives were at stake and God’s word and reputation were on the line. So, three times God commanded Joshua not to fear emphasizing the sufficiency of his most important resource—God’s presence. “I will be with you.”
As we face uncertain times, we too, like Joshua, may be afraid. That’s normal. But believers should remember they do not walk or fight alone. No matter how things look or feel, God is here.
“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.” (Josh. 1:9).