Daily D – Joshua 1:9
This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go. JOSHUA 1:9 (NLT)
These are fearsome times. Our present pandemic is a murderer. No nation is safe from it. No person is assured of lasting immunity.
China received a bloody nose due to the government’s behavior related to COVID-19. Will that dragon snap and bite as it seeks to recover its emerging economic dominance?
North Korea’s supreme leader was rumored to be in grave condition after heart surgery. Is this a good or bad thing for North Korea, for the region, and for the world? Would his sister be allowed to rule? Would she favor Russia or China?
Oil prices hit negative territory along with savings rates. The stock market is bouncing all over the place. Will we ever be able to retire? Will we be able to keep our jobs?
Hospitals are alternately overwhelmed and empty. Some are on the verge of bankruptcy. Will we be able to get medical care if we need it?
We could go on. Let’s not.
There is nothing as bad as God is good.
When Jesus taught us to pray, “Our Father in heaven, may your name be kept holy,” he said more than we most often hear or acknowledge.
Our trinitarian theology includes the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God is Father. Jesus has an exclusive relationship with the Father. John 3:16 says Jesus is the “one and only Son.” He is unique, one of a kind, there is no other like him. And yet he teaches us to pray, Our Father. Jesus includes us in the family. As a result of what he did on the cross, we are adopted, enfolded, included. We have a Father in God.
Our Father in Heaven is not a dad like me. My failures are ever before me. Even my best intentions often end up in negative territory like the stock market and oil prices. I need no other evidence that I am a sinner by nature and by choice. Our Father in heaven is not like that. He can do anything but fail. He is good all the time. All the time he is good.
When Jesus taught us to pray, “may your name be kept holy,” he meant all that our Father’s name indicates about his nature, his character, his reality, his power, his transcendence, and yes, his immanence. There are more big words we could use like immutable and ineffable. We could go on describing the attributes of our Father in heaven.
Pair this reality with Psalm 23:1: “The LORD is my shepherd; I have all that I need,” (NLT).
- “I shall not want,” (ESV)
- “I lack nothing,” (NIV)
- “I have what I need,” (CSB)
- “I don’t need a thing,” (MSG).
We are commanded to be strong.
We are commanded to be courageous.
We are commanded not to be afraid.
We are commanded not to be discouraged.
We are promised God’s presence wherever we go.
God goes with us as the Father.
God goes with us as our Father.
God goes with us as our Father in heaven.
God goes with us as our Father in heaven who is always and forever infinitely better than anything is bad.
We have all we need.
We have all we want.
We have no lack.
Fear, be afraid. The Light is coming to vanquish your shadow.
I will live fearlessly.
Our Father, may we understand better and better how good you are. May we live in ever greater confidence no matter the challenges we face. Teach us to trust you and obey you when you tell us to “Be strong and courageous.” Amen.
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Genesis 26:26-31 Meanwhile, Abimelek had come to him from Gerar, with Ahuzzath his personal adviser and Phicol the commander of his forces. 27 Isaac asked them, “Why have you come to me, since you were hostile to me and sent me away?”
28 They answered, “We saw clearly that the LORD was with you; so we said, ‘There ought to be a sworn agreement between us’—between us and you. Let us make a treaty with you 29 that you will do us no harm, just as we did not harm you but always treated you well and sent you away peacefully. And now you are blessed by the LORD.”
30 Isaac then made a feast for them, and they ate and drank. 31 Early the next morning the men swore an oath to each other. Then Isaac sent them on their way, and they went away peacefully.
Genesis 22:13, 14 Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. 14 So Abraham called that place The LORD Will Provide. And to this day it is said, “On the mountain of the LORD it will be provided.
Genesis 21:1-3 Now the LORD was gracious to Sarah as he had said, and the LORD did for Sarah what he had promised. 2 Sarah became pregnant and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the very time God had promised him. 3 Abraham gave the name Isaac to the son Sarah bore him.
Genesis 17:1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the LORD appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless.
Genesis 6:9 This is the account of Noah and his family.
Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God.