Saturday, October 4, 2014

How to stay strong and courageous in a world full of fear

by Gregory A. Johnson
Tamme-Lauri oak. The oldest tree in Estonia. By Abrget47j (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

There is much fear in the world today. There is no safe place to live. Terror, the fruit of terrorism, grows and ripens daily. There are wars and rumors of wars. Natural disasters are frequent, intense, and brutal. Drought, famine, and disease are widespread. Pandemic viruses know no boundaries. As we live as sojourners in a world that grows increasingly out of step with the Gospel, I encourage you to be strong and courageous.

In the first chapter of Joshua in God’s Word, God is getting ready to take Joshua, and the people of Israel, on a journey out of the wilderness that they were in for forty years, delivering them to the Promised Land. It won’t be easy. They will face a lot of obstacles on the journey, but God tells Joshua repeatedly to be strong and courageous.

Likewise, Christ’s followers are on a journey. On our journey, we keep our eyes fixed on Jesus (Hebrews 12:1-2). Jesus is taking us out of the wilderness and into the Promised Land; it is a journey from earth to glory. We will face a lot of obstacles along the way, but Jesus encourages us to be strong and courageous.

In the midst of all that is going on in the world and in our life, how do we stay strong and courageous? Allow me to share the two ways that are revealed to us in the first chapter of Joshua.