Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
We are not strong because we’ve built up our strength along the way, though that does happen. It’s not that we have grown and become adept and powerful, though that happens, too. But we are strong because of who goes with us. Our faith and trust in God is what gives us courage. Knowing and understanding who God is and that He is near casts out our fear. Being in the presence of God enables us to go forward with a strength that we lack on our own.
In a way, Israel had been following Moses as he followed God. But they had witnessed the great power of God, the great works of God all along the way. Now it was time for them to put their total faith in God and move forward without Moses to lead them. Joshua would have to take up the mantle. The people would have to make their choice whether they were going to depend on the God who had proven Himself to His people. This was a moment where either fear or faith would dictate their next steps.
We have the same choice to make in whatever we are facing. Will it be fear or faith? Will we be able to go ahead with courage because we are trusting God to be with us all the way, because He is strong and mighty, and because He is faithful to us? Our circumstances may be changing. We may not know what is to come. But God never changes. He never fails us. And He won’t abandon us to face those challenges alone.
What might we be facing that seems so hard and daunting and much too big? What do we see in front of us that seems overwhelming and maybe even impossible? Whatever it may be, we do not face those things alone, and that should make a difference in how we handle what is to come and how we face it. God does not forsake His own. It is impossible for Him to fail. He never abandons us to deal with something alone that He has called to. So let us go forward with great faith in our great God.