Ever notice that God does not seem to enjoy doing exact repeats of miracles? Whenever Jesus heals a blind man the process is done differently. Sick people never seem to really be healed in the same way. He even deals with water differently. When the Israelites were fleeing Egypt God had Moses stick his staff out so that the sea would part. In Joshua three the Israelites are in another situation where they need to cross some water.
They have been promised that now is the time to take the land that was promised to them. There is only one little problem. The Jordan River is standing between them and that land, and it is the flood season. However, God does not have Joshua go up to the water, raise his hands up in the air, and watch a pathway open up. Instead, God gives out a new plan.
The priests are told to take the Ark of the Covenant and start heading off into this rapidly moving river. I wonder what was going through these priests’ heads. What is surprising is they follow along with these directions. They take the Ark and go off into the water. Once they start walking into the water God stops the flow of the river so that everyone can pass. The priests are told to wait until everyone has gotten across, and then they can make their way out of the river.
Sometimes God tells us to go into the river when we would rather wait for him to stop the water first. Sometimes we are told to go into a treacherous part of life that seems to be full of trails. We look at the direction God points towards, and we shake our heads in a firm no. Why did the priests seem to be so willing to do this?
They took the ark with them. The Ark was a representation of God and his power. The Ark was where the spirit of God would place Himself. The priests were taking God into the river when they took the Ark. I think the priests understood this all too well. If God was with them then they had no reason to fear.
So often I just wish God would make the path clean and passable before I start to walk down it. Sometimes I need to start walking down it before I can see it is cleared though. This is an opportunity for me to put my faith in Him. This is also incredibly difficult for someone like me. I want to have everything planned out before action is taken.
God is with us though. God is with us when we walk down the path that is not yet clear. We fight so hard to wait for a path that is already open. Sometimes God wants us to actually witness up close how he clears the path though. We scream out that he is leading us to our doom, but if we just stopped and listened maybe we would see that all He wants is for us to witness His power in a way that we have not yet.
Sometimes we are waiting for God to line up every little detail before we start moving. We wait for a path to become clear, and eventually we just end up nowhere because we haven’t moved for so long. I think it is time for us to stop waiting for safe passage 24/7. I think it’s time we let God show us how big he is. Who knows, he might just part some seas for me, and when that happens I want the best seat in the house; right in the water.