Whether Wilderness or Promise Land Hold Fast to
by Taylor Cummings 11/04/2013 / Devotionals
Joshua 22:5, "But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord gave you: to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul."
After a long journey, the Israelites had now entered the Promise Land which God was giving them. They had faced the wilderness for years, and finally, they got to enjoy the fruit of their labor.
In Joshua 22:5, we see how the Israelites were warned to, "Be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord gave to [them]..." I believe Joshua knew how easy it would be for the Israelites to forget God and all that He had brought them through after they entered the Promise Land.
As I've read about the Israelites throughout the years, I've been able to relate to them in many ways! I've related to the wilderness wandering. I've related to the longing of wanting to finally reach the Promise Land. I've been able to empathize with their temptation to settle for less than what God had for them all because the journey seemed rough and felt like it was taking too long. And today, I can relate to how it feels to finally reach the Promise Land.
With every situation the Israelites went through, I can feel how it hits home to me. If I couldn't relate back to it, I'd have an easy time thinking, "How could they be so silly?"... but I am one of the silly Israelites.
This is why I need the reminder to be very careful to keep my eyes on God even though I now have entered the Promise Land.
Looking at the Israelites' lives, I see how God wanted to bless them! He wanted good things for their lives... not because of what they did, but because of who they were - His chosen people. I'm sure there were moments that they didn't think God had their best interest at heart, but I believe God did all along. I've found that God isn't as concerned with our momentary happiness as He is with what is going to be best for us in the end.
Throughout the wilderness, the Israelites had to rely on God for their every meal. They were dependent on the manna that God would send to them each day, and they only had enough for one day at a time. If they tried to keep more for the next day, the manna would be rotten. Due to them having to rely on God for every meal, there's no way they could entirely forget Him.
Now that they were in the Promise Land, though, it would be easier for them to forget that God was still providing their every meal for them.
I don't know about you, but it's easy for me to think I have it all together when things are going well, but the second something gets difficult, God is where I run!
Truth be told, though, we need to be fully reliant on God not only in the bad times, but also on our mountain peaks.
Yesterday, when I read the verse above, what was brought to my attention was that I can completely and totally enjoy the Promise Land God has blessed me with! I can enjoy the beauty of it, and I can celebrate that He has brought me victory. But my revelation didn't end there... God also showed me that I can enjoy all of those things as long as I keep Him first, stay within His boundaries, and obey Him, hold fast to Him, and serve Him.
What God showed me is that I can enjoy every gift He gives me as long as I am walking in obedience to Him!
Regardless of where you are at today... whether you're in the wilderness or in the Promise Land, I encourage you to hold fast to God. If things are difficult, cling to God. If things are the best they've ever been... cling to God! Although you may not feel like God is still providing the manna for you every day, everything you have is a gift from Him. He gives us what we have, and He can take it away. Priority is important!
Dear Heavenly Father,
Today I am living in the Promise Land that I've been journeying to get to for years! I've found myself in a season where there is great joy and abundance in my life! I feel blessed beyond description, and I am eternally grateful for You being so good to me and blessing me like You have, although I could never deserve it! My prayer is that I won't put You anywhere other than first place in my life. God, everything seems perfect right now, and in moments like that, I feel I can handle anything. But truth be told, without You holding my life together, no matter how good it is, it will fall apart if it's not built on You. Be my rock and the One I hold fast to always... in the wilderness and in Promise Land. Help me to walk in obedience to you... enjoying what You've blessed me with while staying in Your borders.