"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go." - Joshua 1:9
Yesterday morning, my daughter drove off with her husband and young daughter and all their belongings to settle in a new area. It is a great opportunity for them and I think it will be a wonderful adventure (you know, they are young...) but it will not be without some sacrifices (for them and for me!). For my daughter, a young woman with a small child, moving to a city where she knows no one is scary.
There is a verse in Joshua where the LORD is encouraging the people to be strong and brave. It is right after Moses died and they are getting ready to cross the Jordan and enter the Promised Land; a new land filled with the unknown and they are going without their beloved leader. In fact, it is more than just an encouragement; it is actually a commandment:
"Have I not commanded you? Do not be afraid(terrified, one translation says); do not be discouraged."
It goes on to say,
"be strong and courageous". (Not so easy I think).
There is a lot about life that can be scary and discouraging (right?). And to be brave or not discouraged when things seem pretty scary or discouraging is not an easy feat. But I love that He doesn't ask them (us) to do it alone. Because the passage goes on to say:
"for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go."
I guess the most important words are not God's commandment but rather His promise: The LORD your God will be with you wherever you go. Oh, if we could really grasp that.
It is kind of like what Christopher Robin said to Pooh,
"If ever there is tomorrow when we're not together ... there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we're apart ... I'll always be with you." - A. A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh
Remember, We can do hard things. Not by our own power, but by His.