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Weekly Devotionals

Timeless Reminder

Joshua 3:14-17

14 So when the people broke camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them. 15 Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, 16 the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho. 17 The priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stopped in the middle of the Jordan and stood on dry ground, while all Israel passed by until the whole nation had completed the crossing on dry ground.

Do you ever remember a time when you experienced God’s grace and power in your life? Perhaps it’s our first time accepting Jesus as our Lord as savior; perhaps it’s when God worked the impossible out in your life; perhaps it’s a group of brothers and sisters who encourage you during your difficult seasons. Now, as time goes by, I think it’s safe to say that the sense of wonder, amazement, and excitement may fade away, although this isn’t necessarily a bad thing when we think about a mature relationship with God. Yet, at the same time, there may be moments where we feel not as close to God anymore due to certain mistakes or decisions that we have made. There may also be moments where we don’t feel as great of ourselves as a believer because of the season that we’re in. 

Now, in today’s passage, we see a generation that’s been “trained” but I would rather call “whining” for 40 years. Over many years, the Israelites have shown unfaithfulness to God while God continued to guide them and provide for them. After these 40 years, here are the Israelites, being commanded by God to cross the river. And just as God did in the crossing of the Red Sea, God makes dry paths to be walked on. The significance of these two stories is obviously that God made the impossible possible by splitting the water. But, why so similar? As God is infinitely creative, he could have chosen many different miracles to reveal who he is at the moment, but why would he “repeat” a very similar miracle? 

I believe that the answer to this is God’s faithfulness. Even after years and a whole generation of unfaithfulness towards God, God loved them the same. As it’s written in many places in the Old Testament, God has always been faithfully loving us while we did not. Therefore, God reveals his faithfulness towards his people by showing them a miracle that resembles God’s faithful love for his people 40 years ago.

With that being said, God continues to pursue after us and shower us with His love. Oftentimes, we acknowledge the danger of “manipulating” a moment with God. Yet, with the heart of a child who always seeks to repeat that great moment with the child’s parent, I believe that we can seek God’s work and presence that reminds us of his faithful love towards us so that we may be faithful to him.

Peace of the Lord Jesus be with you.

Stephen