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  • Henry Omotayo

The Step of Faith

Joshua 3:9-17

Message No. 0554 | Twitter @GodandUs |

One of the major problems that we have in Christianity is an apparent lack of trust in our God, or, at best, a trust that does not go beyond words of mouth. Just look at Israel in the wilderness. Notwithstanding how clearly God proved Himself to them through miracles and signs and wonders, they never proved that they actually trusted God. Over and over, the people accused Moses of a fraud – of tricking them into the wilderness to destroy them rather than allow them to continue to enjoy their slavery in Egypt. If God were not long suffering, project Promised Land would have been abandoned at infancy.

Many times, all that God wants from us is a step of faith, and He would take it further from there. We often, however, chicken out of ventures and beautiful plans because, though we created those plans, we didn’t actually believe that we could pull them through. We are often so deceived by the apparent failures of others around us, and harassed by the challenges that we so easily identify and enlarge, that we shelve our plans till the following year, and then the following year, until at some point in the distant future, we finally dust them up, admire them and exclaim ‘What a beautiful plan!’

River Jordan was not a small river, but the Israelites needed to cross it before they could access their Promised Land. God recognized the challenge this river would pose to the project, and in order to avoid the recalcitrant attitude that had historically bedeviled the people, He pulled Joshua aside and gave him the blueprint for crossing the river. In Joshua 3:7-8, we read:

And the Lord said to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the eyes of all Israel, so they may know that I am with you as I was with Moses. Tell the priests who carry the ark of the covenant: ‘When you reach the edge of the Jordan’s waters, go and stand in the river.’”

Observe that God did not tell Joshua that he should go to the river and cry unto Him, or stare at the river and let the dread of the water sink in, or stretch a rod at the river as was done to the red sea. Why? Because God has different ways of resolving different problems. Yet, this is another problem that we have as God’s children. Many of us are looking to God to solve our problems in the exact manner He solved our neighbors’ problems. We want God to act like a robot.

In the case of the Jordan river, God wanted a different method: a simple step of faith. He wanted the priests to step into the river by faith, and thereafter He would take over and do the rest. This is the place many of us get to, and we abandon our projects. We are scared to do our own part because we do not really believe that God would take over from there. We ask questions like: are we really sure? What if we step into the river and the river sweeps us away? The Bible says that this was harvest time and the river Jordan always overflows at that time, so it would be even scarier to move near it, seeing its high currents.

I have good news though: God never forgets His promises, and He never comes a second late to any appointment. The Lord always goes ahead of His people, just as He did at river Jordan. The Bible says that the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant went ahead of the people. In verses 15 and 16, we read:

Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So, the people crossed over opposite Jericho.

All that God needed from His people was a step of faith. Israel took this step and the Bible says that the problem vanished instantly, and the raging water stood far away from them, so the people crossed the river without fear.

Many of the billionaires we know today took their steps of faith to seize opportunities as soon as they cited them. Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard after two years and started Microsoft. He became a millionaire at 26 and is now a billionaire. Mark Zuckerberg was in Harvard between 2002 and 2004. He started Facebook and dropped out of school to focus on it. He is a billionaire now. There are several others like them who had faith, at least in themselves, to the extent that they left school (which is usually not recommended) to start their companies and they never looked back. How much more those of us who put our trusts in God!

I am not advocating that you drop out of school, everyone’s journey is not the same, but please don’t shelve that plan. Pray about it and if it looks good to you and to God, there is no reason whatsoever why you should not take your step of faith. You may not have the funds, but no one really ever has all the money they need to start their businesses. People usually run the businesses to show viability and thereafter investors become interested. The billionaires of this world use other people’s money to grow their businesses. Just as God did at river Jordan, He is waiting to take over when you take that first step. Just as He did at the river, He is ready to cut the challenge you see off and move it far away from you. As you act by faith, may you be counted among the world’s most successful, in Jesus’ name. Amen. Have a blessed week!

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 If you are yet to give your life to Christ, you do not have a covenant with God and His promises do not apply to you. To come under these promises, please surrender your life to Christ today, by praying this prayer:
 Lord I know that I am a sinner and I am unable to save myself. I am sorry for my sins and I pray that you please forgive me. I am aware that Your Son Jesus died for my sins and I accept Him as my Lord and savior. I surrender my life unto you from this moment. Please take control of my entire being and help me to be obedient to your Word, going forward. Thank you, Lord, for hearing me. I have prayed in Jesus’ name. Amen.
 If you prayed the foregoing prayer, you have just been born again. Please find a Bible believing church in your area and ask to see the pastor. Let him or her know that you have just given your life to Christ and s/he will guide you on next steps in your journey as a child of God. The Lord bless you!
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