Then Joshua cried out, “Oh, Sovereign LORD, why did you bring us across the Jordan River if you are going to let the Amorites kill us? If only we had been content to stay on the other side! Joshua 7:7
But the LORD said to Joshua, “Get up! Why are you lying on your face like this? Joshua 7:10
Often times, like Joshua, we have been waiting and believing for something and we get frustrated and we speak to God in a very similar way that Joshua spoke to God.
We may feel we are doing everything right and yet our blessings seem far away from us. Maybe we are praying for friends and family to come to know God personally, or we are praying for a job, or a new house, or for our healing. The list can go on and on. In the beginning of our believing things start out good, and we are sure God is going to BLESS us. Then Satan throws a stumbling block in our way and we are tempted to give up.
I was praying this weekend about a situation in my own life. I was so sure things were going forward. Each time Satan had put a stumbling block in front of me, God had brought me out victoriously. Now, as I was right on the verge of experiencing the answer to my prayers, a HUGE setback came along that resulted in me saying the following to GOD; “Why did you open every door and now that I was so full of faith that you were “in this” it appears that there is a door shut that is nearly impossible to open!”
I decided to fast and pray until I heard from God. Finally, yesterday afternoon, I was led to the story above in the book of Joshua.
I know that a lot of you have been on the verge of giving up lately. You are frustrated because you have followed the Lord, and lived for the Lord to the best of your human ability. During those times when you feel weak, you trust in God and He strengthens you and holds you up by His strong right hand. I believe you are confused as to what is keeping your miracle from you.
Having said that you want to know WHY nothing seems to be moving forward. So I want to share with you what God has spoken to my heart. Some of it may be a bitter pill to swallow. I apologize in advance for that, but it is my job to share with hurting people what God tells me. I give it to you straight, as God gives it to me.
We look at the scriptures above and we see that God tells Joshua to “GET UP.” Sometimes we witness to people how God is good and God takes care of us and then instead of saying “God is going to take care of this, He always has and He always will,” We get downcast and depressed and wonder what “we” are going to do. Now we somehow believe it is up to a friend or family member to find a solution for our problems. We think God is not big enough to give us a miracle. The unsaved see us wringing our hands and worrying and they must think, “Whoa where is that faith you are always talking about?”
So God says to Joshua to quit being a bad witness to those around him and GET UP. It may take a lot of prayer and letting the Lord give us supernatural strength but it is now, more then ever, we must keep trusting and believing God.
There are two reasons why things are not going forward. In this next verse God speaks to Joshua explicitly about why things are going downhill quickly. In Joshua 7:11 we read the following;
“Israel has sinned and broken my covenant! They have stolen some of the things that I commanded must be set apart for me. And they have not only stolen them but have lied about it and hidden the things among their own belongings.”
So we often have to use this as a metaphor for our own lives. Is there known sin and rebellion we are participating in? Sin, not repented of, cuts off blessings in the lives of Christians. If we are praying for financial miracles are we giving to others? God blesses us, financially, so that we can be a blessing to others. Being blessed by God and hoarding it all for ourselves will stop further blessings COLD. The Word of God says this regarding giving;
“Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete to others it shall be measured to you again.”
Now if we can truthfully say that none of the above applies to our lives then the answer is that as much as we want something to happen, God will allow it to happen in HIS timing and not OUR timing.
I like to use the following metaphor to describe God’s timing in the life of a Christian;
Your son or daughter comes to you and wants your keys to drive somewhere. Now there is nothing wrong with that, and you fully intend to let them have those keys someday. The problem is your child is only 12 years old. If you gave them those keys you know that they could get seriously hurt, or hurt someone else. You say, “No, not yet!” You say “no” out of love for the child and care for the safety of the child.
When things stop, if we are not in known sin, then we have to trust that the timing is off; if God blessed us at this time we could either end up in a bad situation or get hurt.
When God’s timing is not our timing we can lay down on the floor and cry and protest, as Joshua did before the Lord, but it will not change a thing. It may hurt temporarily and it may frustrate us, but we have to always know that when things do not go the way we want them to go, it’s just not the right time for our miracle.
If, we are living for God we have to believe that the stumbling block will be removed. It may be removed tomorrow or the next month or even the next year, but it WILL be removed. God knows and see’s things we do not know or see.
For those in need of financial provision of one sort or the other I ask you to pray the following prayer, after printing it out. Then continue to pray it until you can see a breakthrough!
“Father, I thank You for promising that if we would honor You with our finances by joyfully giving, that You would bless our abundantly.
Right this very moment I will stop worry and stressing about finances because You know what I need and You will provide for my family and me.
I determine to seek first Your Kingdom and Your righteousness, and I know that all things we need (Food, finances, clothing, shelter, ect.) will be given to us.
You are always faithful to supply all of our needs according to your riches in glory by Christ Jesus! Thank you for blessing us with everything we need, and thank You that we will always have more than enough to be a blessing to others.”
Even if we are as broke as a church mouse we can bless someone else. A smile goes a long way if it is followed by saying, “How are you doing today!” to a hurting person.
Ask God to send you to someone today that needs a cheerful friend. I often do that and God will put the picture of someone in my mind. If I can I will call that person and see what I can do to brighten their day.
I believe that self-centered attitudes STOP blessings from flowing in our lives.
In His Never-Ending Love,