After 40 years of wandering, the time had come for the Israelites to move forward into the Promise Land. Don’t you know that they were so ready! Yet, to get there, they would have to trust God to work out the details. They would have to literally step out in faith because the Jordan River stood between them and the Promise.
Joshua 14 – 17 — So when the people broke camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them. 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, 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. 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.
Can you imagine being one of the Israelites, standing at the Jordan River, on the cusp of taking a step into the river? It was flood season, and logic would say, “Folks, this doesn’t look like a good idea. This could end badly. You know, you’ve waited 40 years, why not wait until the water dies down? What can a few more months hurt?”
I think sometimes we bend towards the thinking that “it should be easier”. If God really wanted us to do something, then our paths would look more like a beautiful stroll on a country road rather than an obstacle course, right? However, story after story in the bible we find men and women faced with seemingly insurmountable obstacles. We also find God showing up in incredible ways in the midst of those obstacles just as He did for the Israelites when they needed to get across the Jordan River. They first had to take the step of faith, be obedient. It was in the moment of doing so that God showed off His awesome power.
He made the water stop flowing and stand up in a “heap”. He opened up a way for them to get across on dry ground. I don’t know about you, but when I think of the water standing up in a heap I find myself a little in awe. Can you imagine being one of the people in living in Adam (which Joshua tells us is a great distance away)? I’m guessing a few jaws dropped that day!
In an instant.
Feet in the water.
1 Million or so Israelites head across to the Promise Land.
My favorites from Chapter 4:
Page 41 – Plan B situations often require more than we think have. They almost always grant us opportunities to stretch and draw closer to God.
Page 47 – God’s power generally gets released when we trust him enough to obey him.
Join the Discussion:
What is your Jordan River? What is standing between you and the life God has for you? Hard questions, I know. I’ve been processing these myself. Can you see yourself taking a step of faith?
Let’s Dive In!