Then the LORD said to Joshua, “Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Take the whole army with you, and go up and attack Ai. For I have delivered into your hands the king of Ai, his people, his city and his land. Joshua 8:1 NIV
In 8th grade, I had the opportunity to co-teach a short lesson to some of my peers in English class. I had studied and was prepared with my material. Every time I spoke the other students were rude, interrupting me and finally told me that they would rather listen to the other person that was helping teaching with me. I felt like a failure.
I definitely did not want to try to do this again. Later we had a discussion about the teaching experience. The whole teaching exercise was an experiment. The students were told to reject one teacher and to praise the other. I got the rejection straw.
Joshua led the Israelites in battle against the town of AI and were defeated soundly. In that previous battle against Jericho, Achan had sinned by keeping some of the treasure of Jericho. This sin opened the door for defeat. (side note – God does care about you following His plans, sin still opens doors for harassment in your life).
Now, God tells Joshua to enter the battle again against the same town in which they were defeated. He also tells him not to be afraid or discouraged. People died in the last battle. His leadership truly had life or death consequences. In our passage today, God instructs Joshua to take the “whole army”. Joshua follows the plans of the Lord and they are successful in defeating the town.
Do you have failures in your past that limit you from moving forward? Have you made statements that reveal “fear” about trying something again?
Sometimes it is important to “enlist the whole army”. On this Fear Not Friday I want to encourage you to reach out to others to help you overcome your fear of failure. A healthy body of Christ wants to help. This means that we need each other to be successful. God has placed us in the body of Christ to equip and edify one another. Encouragement comes through connections.
Ask the Lord who might be able to help you overcome your situation. You don’t have to overcome your fears by yourself – enlist the help of others.
That 8th grade class lesson really hurt as I was rejected by my friends. Yet, God had a plan for me to spend a lifetime teaching others. Don’t let fear and discouragement keep you from following the desires which God has placed within you. Link arms with people who love you and believe in you. Fears highlight dead ends. God’s ways lead to light, life, and freedom. May you join with others who are following God’s path.
Blessings Love y’all