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Take the Lead: Prepared to Obey?

by in Soul Food

"After the death of Moses the servant of the LORD, the LORD said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses' aide: 'Moses my servant is dead. Now then, you and all these people, get ready to cross the Jordan River into the land I am about to give to them—to the Israelites.' " (Joshua 1:1-2)

This week, we're going to read about Joshua and talk about what it means to be a leader. It's hard to imagine a more intimidating job than his. How do you "take over" for Moses? God handpicked Moses to lead His people out of captivity in Egypt. God showed Himself to Moses and delivered to him the Ten Commandments and the Law. God inspired Moses to write the first five books of the Bible. Moses had been the top guy in Israel for 40 years!

If I'd been Joshua — about to lead Israel into the Promised Land after Moses' death — I would have been scared. For 40 years, the people of Israel had been waiting for this very day. And now their leader Moses was gone. How was Joshua going to pull this off?

God's first words to him: "Get ready to go." Joshua is about to learn that even when God is the one taking care of everything, good leaders must prepare to do what God tells us. We can't just wait for all the details to fall into place on their own. Part of obeying God is getting ourselves (and those under our influence) ready to obey God.

Think: How do you prepare to obey God's instructions to you? What do you do to get yourself ready to honor your parents, to remain sexually pure, to keep yourself from telling lies? Is anyone following your example?

Pray: Ask God for new insight from Joshua's life about how you can get yourself ready to obey whatever He asks you to do.

Do: Make a short list of a few people in your life under your influence, anyone who might follow your example one way or another.

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