Obstacles or Stepping Stones?

For we have heard how the Lord made a dry path for you through the Red Sea when you left Egypt. And we know what you did to Sihon and Og, the two Amorite kings east of the Jordan River, whose people you completely destroyed.
Joshua 2:10, NLT*

En route to the Promised Land, Israel encountered two kings who refused to allow them to pass. Each king attacked, and was killed along with all his people. You can read the story in Numbers 21:21-35.

I can imagine the Israelites, thinking they were on the road to their blessing, confronted by an army. Twice. The way was blocked. Soldiers pointed weapons at them.

Do you think they were discouraged? Frustrated?

Being human, they likely weren’t as confident in God as He wanted them to be, despite His past care. Every time God intervened for Israel was a chance for them to develop confidence in His power. He was proving Himself to them. He gave them victory, and brought them to the Jordan’s banks with the river in full flood.

Today’s verse was spoken by a citizen of Jericho (Rahab) when the Israelite spies went to scout the city. Word of God’s mighty power had spread. The obstacles, like the Red Sea and the two kings (and the Jordan River), weren’t random challenges to make Israel’s life harder. They were stepping-stones to not only build up God’s people’s faith but to show others His power.

Can we look at the issues and setbacks in our lives this way? Learn to trust God to meet them, and recognize that however impossible they seem now, God can use them if we’ll only trust Him? Can we press on in the strength He gives, without grumbling or despair? Even with hope?

God our Provider and our King, forgive us when we look at the obstacles and forget about Your unseen power and Your love for us. Where You lead, You will make a way. Increase our faith and help us to choose to rely on you. Strengthen us to take captive our fears, doubts and complaints, and open our eyes to see what You will do.

I spent last weekend at a concert and conference led by Robin Mark and band. His song, “I Will Walk,” reminds us to walk with God: for His glory and for our sakes.

*New Living Translation (NLT) Holy Bible. New Living Translation copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

2 thoughts on “Obstacles or Stepping Stones?

  1. Bobbi Junior

    Stepping stones… Hmmm… When we live in confidence of this truth, others can’t help but see there is a difference in us, a difference that comes from our confidence in God. Now to pray and see if I’m missing the mark on this anywhere! Thanks Janet

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