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Filtering by Category: Deuteronomy

A Reminder from Joshua

Meg Chaney

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But in spite of this you did not trust the Lord your God, who went before you on the journey to seek out a place for you to camp. He went in the fire by night and in the cloud by day to guide you on the road you were to travel.
— Deuteronomy 1:32-33, HCSB
For the Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He has watched over your journey through this immense wilderness. The Lord your God has been with you this past 40 years, and you have lacked nothing.’
— Deuteronomy 2:7, HCSB
Don’t be afraid of them, for the Lord your God fights for you.
— Deuteronomy 3:22, HCSB

 

The Lord was before the Israelites, by day and by night. A pillar by day and a fire by night. They saw His miraculous signs and wonders, His protection of them, time and again, yet still they didn't trust Him. Still they feared what they saw with their eyes. They looked at their circumstances, and withered, backing off. How could they ever face such giants? 

Time and again, Joshua is reminded to be strong and courageous, for The Lord fights for them.

That's such a great reminder to us as well. 

Be strong and courageous.  

Those giants, they are nothing compared to the power of our Almighty God. 

Hallelujah.  

That's the truth I stand upon today. 

He has overcome. 

His is able to handle the giants of my life today. 

He doesn't want me to live in defeat, in doubt, in wondering about my own self-worth. 

Not when He has already overcome. 

I could spend my life wandering around a wilderness. And, honestly, there are times that this life feels like a wilderness. 

Parched. Destitute. Seemingly-without Hope. 

But then God arrives. 

The Breathe of life. 

My manna in the wilderness. 

My provider. 

My sustainer. 

And He reminds me, much like Joshua, to be strong and  courageous.  

To not fear. 

For The Lord God goes with me wherever I go. 

 

 

Where can I go to escape Your Spirit?
Where can I flee from Your presence?
If I go up to heaven, You are there;
if I make my bed in Sheol, You are there.
If I live at the eastern horizon
or settle at the western limits,
even there Your hand will lead me;
Your right hand will hold on to me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me,
and the light around me will be night”—
even the darkness is not dark to You.
The night shines like the day;
darkness and light are alike to You.
— Psalm 139: 7-12, HCSB

Depending

Meg

"There is none like the God of Jeshurun, who rides the heavens to your aid, the clouds in His majesty. The God of old is your dweling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms. He drives out the enemy before you and commands, 'Destroy!" So Isreal dwells securly; Jacob lives untroubled in the land of grain and new wine; even his skies drip with dew" (Deuteronomy 33: 26-28, HCSB).

I found myself having one of those mornings. My head was aching, my little girl was fussy, and I was reminded, once again, of how long it would be before I saw my husband again.

I just wanted him here. I think a part of me thought that my husband could fix it. That my husband could make our morning better.

Yes, I certainly would have been happier with him there. But the truth of the matter is that my head probably still would of ached and my daugter would have still be fussy.

I didn't need my husband there to set things straight. No, I needed my God to redirect my heart. I needed my Savior's arms to lean on.

My Savior's arms are everlasting. Everlasting means that they will always be there. They will never fail. I can go anywhere, do anything in this life, and my Savior will always be there, right by my side.

All He asks is that I trust. All He asks is that I keep my focus on His everlasting arms, not on the transient things of this world. That I focus on Him, not the things I can't change.

His arms will carry me to a place and a time where there is so such thing as war, sickness and death. There is no such thing as longing, because, in His presence, we will be compltele.

And so, for today, I'll sing an old hymn, one that reminds me of where my focus should be.

Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms.
(Elisha A. Hoffman, pub. 1887).

No Room for Fear

Meg

“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deuteronomy 31:8 NIV).

I’m what many people would define as a “homebody.” On any given night I’d much rather be tucked safely away at home with my family, playing games and sipping on a cup of tea, than venturing out and socializing in public. It’s not that I don’t love people. I do. I’d just rather be in a place I’m safe and comfortable. Who wouldn’t?
Just the same, life in the military can be anything but comfortable.
We often find ourselves on the move. Making new friends. Exploring new cities. Socializing in new circles.
While I’d rather be safe at home, God has placed me in a life that asks more of me. He pushes me to be the wife and mother He created me to be. As the wife of an officer, this life often calls me to be brave, to get past my own fears and see the world around me, to love and be loved, and to recognize how lonely this life would be without friends along.
And so I take a deep breathe, pack the diaper bag, and take my little girl on adventures each day. We find the nearest coffee shop, go to the play dates, and join the Bible study at the chapel. We grab a hold of the new adventures God has placed before us, and pray for the strength we need for each day.

What has God pushed you outside of your comfort zone?

Our Strength

Meg

I depend on my husband so much. He’s my best friend, my confidant, my safety and my strength. He takes care of me when I don’t feel well, does the dishes when I’m tired, and heavy things so that I don’t have to. I appreciate him so much.

But what happens when he’s not around? Do I fall to pieces, unable to function? Or do I have something far great to depend on?

When my husband’s away, there’s nothing I’d like better to do then have a good cry, and spend all my time on the couch eating ice cream and watching sappy movies.

And I may let myself do this for a day.

But I believe that God wants something more of me than this.

I believe that separation from my spouse is a time when God tests my love and dependence. Is it solely in a person, or is it most of all in my God?

Because, as much as I depend on my husband, I need to depend on God all the more. My husband can fail me, my God cannot. While my husband can never promise to meet my every need 24/7, my God can. He’s always strong, always stable, and always ready and willing to come to my aide.



“The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe” (Proverbs 18:10 NIV).

It’s the times when I’m lonely that I remember just how much I need the strength of God. I need the refuge and strength I find in Him and Him alone. I would be a complete mess without it.

What’s wonderful is that God understands me on the days I’m tired, alone and afraid, and He’s ready and willing to be my refuge and strength, if only I ask. Since I was a little girl, my favorite passage of scripture has been Psalm 46. It starts by reminding us that God is our true source of strength in times of trouble, and ends with a reminder to be still in His presence and recognize Him as the one true God, the only one that can fulfill our need for shelter and strength.

I hope these verses serve as a form of encouragement to you today, and remind you that you’re never really alone.

God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.


Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,


though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
Selah


There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy place where the Most High dwells.


God is within her, she will not fall;
God will help her at break of day.


Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall;
he lifts his voice, the earth melts.


The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah


Come and see the works of the LORD,
the desolations he has brought on the earth.


He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth;
he breaks the bow and shatters the spear,
he burns the shields  with fire.


"Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth."


The LORD Almighty is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah


(Psalm 46 NIV)

It can be tough when a spouse is far away, but God is ready and willing to be your true source of strength and comfort. While your spouse will travel here and there, your Heavenly Father will never have to leave.

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6 NIV).

Be Strong

Meg

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).

We all have moments of doubt. I was reminded of a friend of mine as I read these verses today. This friend has started doubting the presence of God in her life. She doesn’t feel him moving in the midst of her troubles. She feels very alone. But he’s there. He promises in these verses above that he will never leave us, even during the darkest, scariest times. I know from dark moments in my life that God is always ready to pick us up and carry us through the good and bad times. He’s never let me down, even when other people in this world have. He’s always been there.

In addition the verse above calls us to be strong and courageous. The Hebrew word for strong, chazaq, means to prevail, be firm, and persevere. The Hebrew word for "courageous" 'amats, is very similar in it’s meaning. 'Amats means to be strong, brave and bold. In essence, God is not calling us to live fearful lives, but lives in which we trust in him, and take giant leaps of faith. In the military world we and our spouses certainly face some scary things. There are certainly lonely times, violent times, and times when it’s hard to see the hand of God at work. I, myself, am grasping a hold of this verse and its words about God's faithfulness for whatever tomorrow may bring.

How might God be asking you to be courageous today? Do you need him to carry you through a dark time?

300 words

Meg

I took a challenge today. Write something meaningful in exactly 300 words. So hear I go.

My purpose for this blog is to give other military wives hope. Life can be hard. Our husbands can't always be around. So how do we cope? To be honest, I'm still trying to figure that out. What I know so far is this: God has to be first.

It’s taken me awhile to get to this point. In the past, relationships I had were easily raised on pedestals, to an unhealthy point. They were in essence “gods” in my life, people I loved more and spent more time thinking about then God himself, in direct opposition to one of the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:3). Ouch. I have trouble even now admitting this. Since then, I’ve tried so hard to always make sure God is number one and that I depend on Him more than anything.

As much as I want to depend on my husband to always make me feel happy, loved, and safe, I can't. My husband is human, and he has a very demanding job. Don't get me wrong, I know he loves me and wants to protect me. Just the same, God needs to be the one I ultimately look at for true joy, agape love, and eternal safety.

My husband, as hard as he may work, can never give me these things. There will be times when my husband does disappoint me and make me cry, and when he deploys overseas, leaving me in an empty house for months at a time.

If I depend on my husband most of all, I'll be hurt and disappointed.

If I depend on my Lord and Savior, I'll never be.

Lord, please help me to always keep you first in my life.

Facing the Unknown

Meg

I’ve been praying a lot for a friend of mine this week. Her husband just deployed, leaving her at home with two tiny girls. This is the first time she’s had to take care of both girls on her own. I’m sure she’s dealing with a good bit of loneliness and sadness today.

In my Bible-In-A-Year reading this morning I was in the book of Deuteronomy. The first section heading caught my eye right away; it was called “Going to War.” How relevant. In this section Moses was reminding the Israelites that they would never be alone in battle, God would always go before them. While my friend’s husband is facing a battle over seas, she’s facing a battle on this side of the ocean as well, that of loneliness. The months ahead won’t be easier to her, but I hope these words found in Deuteronomy will be an encouragement to her as much as they are to me:

When you go to war against your enemies and see horses and chariots and an army greater than yours, do not be afraid of them, because the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt, will be with you. When you are about to go into battle, the priest shall come forward and address the army. He shall say: ‘Hear, O Israel, today you are going into battle against your enemies. Do not be fainthearted or afraid; do not be terrified or give way to panic before them. For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.’" (Deuteronomy 20:1-4 NIV).

When we trust in God, he gives us victory in things big and small. He gives us the strength to face the unknowns of each and everyday. With more troops being sent overseas in the coming months, I don’t know what the future will hold for my husband. He may very well be sent as well. Knowing this, I claim hold of the promise that God is big enough to be on both sides of the ocean at once.

Today my prayer is for those fighting overseas, that they will truly feel the presence of God in these violent times.

The Unknowns of 2010

Meg

What will this year bring? I really can't say. The military life is so unpredictable. We could move across the country. My husband could deploy over seas. We could start a family. Or make new, unexpected friends

In the past I might have worried about all the unknowns, but for right now  I'm excited. I'm excited for what God will teach us. I'm excited for how we'll stretch and grow. I'm excited for all of the experiences we'll have, the new places we'll go.

Yes, the unknown is scarey. But just the same it's nice to know that God will go with us each step of the way.

I don't know what all of you are facing today. Perhaps you're scared, perhaps your're worried., or perhaps you're excited like me.

As I sit here in my Sunday best, ready to greet the day, I wanted to encourage all of you through the word of God. This is what the book Deuteronomy has to say:
"The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged" (Deuteronomy 31:8).

I pray that you claim this verse for yourself today, and for all of your loved ones that may be far away. As the above verse reminds us, there is no place we can go to in this world, that the Father does not follow. He is always with us, protecting us and keeping us strong, through the good times and the bad.

This verse comforted me in 2009 as my husband and I moved across the country. It helped me stay strong through the lonely days that followed, as we tried to make new friends. It gave me peace as we faced a possible deployment. And today it brings me joy. For we made it through 2009 by the grace of God alone. I'm so thankful that He never did leave our side. And I'm thankful that He's with all of you this morning, comforting you wherever you may be.

If you need prayer for anything, please let me know. I'm always here, ready to get down on my knees and present our problems and praises to the Lord.

One is the loneliest number

Meg

Moving across the country with the military is rough, but it’s harder still when our husbands have to leave us behind in an unknown city. Far away from friends and family, it can be the loneliest place in the world to be. That cold pillow beside you at night can bring you to tears. The food that takes a week to eat, instead of a night, slowly goes bad in the fridge. The quietness of the house is almost beyond what you can bear, so what do you do?

In Isaiah 41:10 God says these precious words:

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (NIV).

It can be fearful living on your own, especially if you’ve never experienced it before. I know that I can be slightly paranoid in a dark house, double checking windows and doors, and locking myself in my room before I go to sleep. There’s a certain safety that goes away when my husband isn’t home. It’s easy for me to get caught up in the loneliness and fear. Just the same, Isaiah 41 reminds us that God is there, ready and willing to help us through the loneliest times of our lives. He promises to hold us up when we can hardly stand on our own, and to help us make it through another day. He will always be beside us in this life, even when our husbands cannot. He is the only one who will never leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:8). And so, it’s oh so important, dear sisters, that we trust in Him.
Dear Lord, thank you that you are by my side, even on the loneliest of days.

That Thing Called Fear

Meg

Luke 12:7 Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Right now I’m sitting on my porch, looking at my beautiful flowers, and enjoying this fine August afternoon. This past month has been a crazy one, but for once, I’m at peace with what lies ahead. Things are starting to come together. My husband’s “deployment check-list” is almost completed. Before I know it I will be saying goodbye. That day will be hard, I know. I’m sure some tears will follow, accompanied by a big bowl of feeling-sorry-for-myself ice cream and a lonely night in a big house. But for today I’m no longer fearful about what lies ahead.

What about you? Are you scared about anything? Or have you given that area of your life back to God. For me, giving fear back to God is something I do on a daily basis. Satan knows how to push buttons in my life. And one of those areas consists of fear.

What do I do then, what I start to become fearful?

I turn to God’s word.

Consider these versus. I hope one of them speaks to you personally today.

• “When I am afraid, I will trust in you” (Psalm 56:3).

• “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD, is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation” (Isaiah 12:2).

• “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you" (Deuteronomy 31:6).
•    "I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows” (Luke 12:4-7).
•    “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7).

If you’re fearful, remember that God is with you. He is ready and waiting to comfort you and help you through this rough time. But you have to reach out to him: “For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:8).