Has God ever told you to do something specific? No, not in an audible voice, but still in an undeniable, unshakable, inescapable desire to accomplish something. It starts out as a spur-of-the-moment idea, one of those concepts that you should be able to easily brush aside as nonsense, but it doesn’t brush away. It’s like a sand burr in your brain, and it keeps poking and poking until you can’t ignore it anymore. Or pressure on your heart.
At least, that’s how God talks to me outside of Scripture. Maybe I’m nuts, but that has been my experience. And I wish I were a “good” enough Christian to tell you that every time I realize it’s God talking to me I jump right up and do exactly like He’s commanding.
Right. Most of the time, I duck my head down, stick my fingers in my ears, and hum a song to myself in hopes that He’ll leave me alone and ask someone more qualified to take care of it. And it’s not that I don’t think He equips people for tasks. For me, most of the time, the issue is time itself. I don’t have much to offer. But something happened yesterday that made me remember exactly Who is in charge of time.
Moon rising over Safe Haven Farm, Haven, KS
Today’s verses are Joshua 10:12-14.
On the day the Lord gave the Israelites victory over the Amorites, Joshua prayed to the Lord in front of all the people of Israel. He said, “Let the sun stand still over Gibeon, and the moon over the valley of Aijalon.” So the sun stood still and the moon stayed in place until the nation of Israel had defeated its enemies. Is this event not recorded in The Book of Jashar? The sun stayed in the middle of the sky, and it did not set as on a normal day. There has never been a day like this one before or since, when the Lord answered such a prayer. Surely the Lord fought for Israel that day!
So much of the Old Testament can be confusing because of cultural references, and–let’s not beat around the bush here–the Old Testament records a lot of major supernatural things happening that we just don’t see anymore. True, the New Testament records miracles too but not like the first 39 books of the Bible. And today’s passage is just one small mention of one major thing.
According to this passage, the sun and the moon stopped moving until Israel defeated their enemies.
What the heck? That’s not something you hear about every day. That’s not something you hear about every thousand years. I mean, shoot, we get all excited for lunar eclipses. What would happen if the sun and moon both just stopped moving in the sky? It would make the Mayan apocalypse of 2012 look like a bad science fiction movie…. wait….
What am I getting at here?
Okay. Confession time. God told me to do something recently, and my response to Him was, “Are you freakin’ crazy? That’s nuts!” But God’s not crazy, and when He wants me to do something, He doesn’t stop leaning on me until I get it through my thick skull that, yes, He is talking to me. So I said yes, but I reminded Him how busy I was. I reminded Him how much work I had to do and how little time I had to do it in. If He didn’t help me out, it wasn’t going to work.
So what happened? To keep this long story short, the day after I stopped fighting, I got more accomplished than I have in ages. And I got it done everywhere, at work, at home, in my personal to do list. Everywhere.
I don’t know why God doesn’t just knock me over the head with a two-by-four some days. He has so much more patience with me than I deserve.
Here’s the thing, Christians (and I’m so talking to myself right now). If God has told you to do something, He isn’t going to leave the whole weight of it on your shoulders. Yes, many times, we have to take the initiative, but God doesn’t expect us to carry out His plans all on our own strength. After all, they’re not our plans; they’re His. So why would He give us something to do and then leave it entirely on us?
I have no excuse for refusing to do what God has asked me to do. All my supposed obstacles became opportunities.
So what’s stopping you? Are you scared? Ask Him for courage; He helped a teenager slay a warrior giant. Are you broke? Ask Him for resources; He can take five loaves and fishes and feed 10,000 people. Or are you like me and you’re too busy? Remember, you’re talking to the God who can stop the moon and sun in the sky whenever He chooses.
No excuses, Christ-followers. Think about it. Let’s stop handing Him a bunch of lines and just do what He asks. I think we might be surprised at what He does in our lives.