I can’t imagine what the Israelites were thinking as they lined up to march. Joshua’s instructions must have sounded crazy. “Line up, we are going to march around this city once and then we are going back to camp. Tomorrow, we’ll do the same thing.” This is not your typical war strategy.
For six days, the people marched obediently around Jericho once, quietly, and returned to camp.
On the seventh day, they received different directions. “This time, we are going to march around the city seven times and when I give the signal, we are going to make a lot of noise.” Not exactly an aggressive attack.
The Israelites did as Joshua, their leader, commanded, and watched in awe as Jericho fell before. They literally did nothing to cause it to happen.
Sometimes, we read this story and we are tempted to glean the wrong message. People create applications such as, “Just sit back and watch, God’s going to bring down the walls of the Jericho in your life.” And, “God’s power will remove the obstacles before you so that you can accomplish what you set out to accomplish.” While that’s what God did for Israel, He does not promise to move in our lives in the same way.
Their victory that day came for one simple reason – Joshua trusted and followed God’s direction. Joshua had one job – do exactly what God told him to do. That’s what Joshua did, and that’s why Israel had victory.
I had an emotionally draining day yesterday and was left feeling rattled and slightly unhinged. I shed a lot of tears; it wasn’t pretty. Several things that I have been praying about and working on are just not coming together as I had hoped or planned. Yesterday felt like walking through a field of emotional landmines, and I stepped on a lot of them – including the “I can’t believe I’m letting this get to me. I’m so dumb for setting myself up like this” trap. Now, even more uncertainty and change are likely coming. And that terrifies me. (PS – Jon and I are fine.)
I woke up early this morning with this one thought: My job isn’t to plan the future, my job is to do whatever God tells me to do.
I want to control everything.
I want a clear plan for the future.
I want to understand all the circumstances.
I want to vindicate myself.
I want to correct wrong thinking (and bald-faced lies).
I want to kick and scream and be heard.
But absolutely none of those things are my job. My one job is to submit to God:
Regardless of the circumstances or my feelings.
Whether or not He does what I think He should do.
Whether or not I get my way.
Today, I’m not going to stress myself out trying to do someone else’s job. I’m going to find peace by doing my one job.