Past Tense

Now the gates of Jericho were securely barred because of the Israelites. No one went out, and no one came in.
2 Then the Lord said to Joshua, "See, I have delivered Jericho into your hands, along with its king and its fighting men. 3 March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days. 4 Have seven priests carry trumpets of rams' horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets. 5 When you hear them sound a long blast on the horns, have the whole army give a loud shout; then the wall of the city will collapse, and the army will go up, everyone straight in." Joshua 6:1-5

Every time I read the story of Jericho I think about how much stuff God required Joshua to do. I mean it was really a lot.
But then, it's even more fun to focus on the first thing that the Lord says to Joshua, "I have delivered Jericho into your hands." He had already done it. It wasn't that Joshua's actions produced some magic formula that made the walls come down. It was all about whether Joshua was obedient enough to carry out the command.
How many things are already done in our lives? Is He merely asking of us to see if we would obey?
I think that the answer is yes.
Because His plans always stand.
Because He knows more than we all do.
But mostly because the cross finished everything.
It's all done. The Lord has made a way for us. He has prepared a place for us. He has secured our inheritance. Christ on the cross finished the work. It's all done.
I love that God talks in past tense in the Bible. I skim over it at times, not truly taking the time to understand and appreciate what it means when He does so. But the fact that God talks in past tense so much is a comfort to an anxious ridden soul like me.
I worry about how Will will fare in school, standing up for himself and finding friends.
But God has already found friends for Will and has already set up opportunities and obstacles for him to grow and become more assertive. It's not up to me to try and diminish and take away from the things the Lord will do and use to shape my boy.
Obey Him, it is already done.
I worry about Dave and if he is being fulfilled in his job.
But God already has a career path for Dave and his future, He knows where he should go and where he will go. Why would I doubt that He has anything less than Dave's good in mind?
Obey Him, it is already done.
I worry about Ruby's ability to hold her own in a regular classroom, about her academics, about her sweet heart being broken by people that don't understand her.
But God knew Ruby before I did. He has the perfect school for her and teachers who will understand and shape and mold her. He has the perfect plan lined up for her and has provided her with the talent she needs. Why would I stand in the way of a person God has clearly chosen for some stunning stuff?
Obey Him, it is already done.
And I can choose different things, sure. But if I do my best to listen to the Lord and obey His Spirit, the walls of Jericho will fall.
It's all done.
Victory is ours if only we would reach out and take it.
Nothing Fancy.

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