Sunday, March 15, 2015

March 15 - Joshua 22

Today's reading in our daily plan is Joshua 22. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)

  • Joshua sends three subgroups of Israelites -- the Reubenites, Gadites, and Manassites -- to return to their home lands. This was because they had enjoyed the perks of the land God had given them, and God wanted them to go back and bless people in their homelands with the love, knowledge, experience, and resources they had gained during their time with Joshua.
  • The Reubenites, Gadites, and Manassites set off to return home. They end up constructing an altar at a city along the Jordan River. This is a big red flag to the Israelites' leaders because, back in their time, altars were almost always set set up to worship idols (false gods). However, the groups who constructed the altar explain to the leadership that they set up the altar as a monument to God. The leaders are happy to hear this.

SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)

  • Like the Reubenites, Gadites, and Manassites, we need to look for ways to show God's love to people who haven't experienced it like we have.  
  • The Reubenites, Gadites, and Manassites were able to take something typically used for evil (an altar) and use it for God. Likewise, we need to seek to redeem our seemingly bad situations, talents, relationships, and circumstances so they can lead us and others closer to Jesus.

NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)

  • Who are you going to see this week that you haven't shown God's love to? Plan now to intentionally ambush them with God's love. Maybe you could buy lunch for a coworker you don't know, or reconnect with a friend you haven't talked to in a long time. These opportunities can grow into relationships and conversations you can use to point these people to God.
  • What can you redeem? Is there a talent you used to use for your own gain that you could now use for God's glory? For instance:
    • Maybe you've always been great at earning a lot of money for yourself. What if you started to give more and more of that to God or to those in need?
    • Maybe you tend to manipulate people to get what you want. What if you started using your people skills to authentically talk to them about God and his love?
    • Maybe you used to find it easy to invite other people to participate in activities they shouldn't have. What if you invited them to come to church with you this weekend?
  • Ask God to show you what you can redeem for His glory, and commit to begin that redeeming process today.