The people of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and Ai and cooked up
a ruse. They posed as travelers: their
donkeys loaded with patched sacks and mended wineskins, threadbare sandals on
their feet, tattered clothes on their bodies, nothing but dry crusts and crumbs
for food. They came to Joshua at Gilgal
and spoke to the men of Israel, "We've come from a far-off country; make a
covenant with us."
The men of Israel said to these Hivites, "How do we know you aren't local
people? How could we make a covenant
They said to Joshua, "We'll be your servants."
Joshua said, "Who are you now? Where did you come from?"
11) They said, "From a far-off country, very far away. You servants came because we'd heard such
great things about God, your God--all the things He did in Egypt!....Our
leaders and everybody else in our country told us, 'Pack up some food for the
road and go meet them. Tell them, We're
your servants; make a covenant with us.'…
The men of Israel looked them over and accepted the evidence. But they didn't ask God about it.
So Joshua made peace with them and formalized it with a covenant to guarantee
their lives. The leaders of the
congregation swore to it.
And then, three days after making this covenant, they learned that they were
next-door neighbors, who had been living there all along.
THINK: "Is there a place in your life where you
are susceptible to offers and flattery, so you can form attachments without
asking God for input? (Attachments
refers to relationships and commitments to people, tasks, and organizations.)
PRAY: "Ask God to help you go over your
attachments by moving through the following questions as if God were sitting
next to you with his arm around you.
What attachments, if any, have you
rushed into without investigating further, especially by asking God what you
need to know about the situation?
Ask God to show you where, if at all,
you need to back off from an attachment."
LIVE: "Wait with an open heart for anything
God might say to you. If nothing comes
to you, ask God to make it apparent in the next few weeks if there's anything
you need to know about your attachments."
When I first started
this blog (back way before this series), I just wanted someone to see me, to be
noticed. To use this as a way of doing
something for God that might be important.
The thing is: I didn't care so
much about it being important to God. I
wanted it to be important to my fellow man.
Surely, if I did something that made an impact in the lives of people
around me, that would be good in God's eyes.
And if that was good in God's eyes, then maybe I would be good in God's eyes. Doing good to gain approval has been my
attachment for as long as I can remember.
Being good enough to be considered worthy of love. In an effort to gain approval, I have
over-committed myself far too often. I
have agreed to things before I've thought them out. I've volunteered for things that I didn't
really want to do because I wanted approval.
Fear of rejection has been a pretty big deal in my life because I have
believed the lie that I have to perform well to be accepted because who I am
surely will not be enough.
are plenty of areas in my life where this has been demonstrated as untrue. Amazing, isn't it, how good Satan is at
magnifying the areas where the lies we've believed seem to have proven true so as
to overshadow the times the truth has shone out?!
The truth of the
matter is: none of us can ever do
anything "good enough" for God because all have sinned and fall short
(Romans 3:23). The Devil is so crafty,
however, that he knows just how to twist that verse around in our minds so that
he can use it against those who desire acceptance and approval just so they can
feel loved, or believe they are loved.
It's like he says:
even the Bible says you are not worthy, that you have fallen short."
And if you just stop
there, it would be easy to believe that there will never be any hope for people
such as this, such as me. However,
because God is good, He made a way for us to escape that "fallen-short"
state. Satan knows this, which is why He
never volunteers the rest of the sentence (continued in Romans 3:24) or the
context for the verse (all of Romans, but specifically chapter 3). The rest of the sentence (Romans 3:24 says):
all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Jesus
If my attachments
are based in on Earth, I will always fall short. Those attachments will always
disappoint. Nothing here can satisfy the
longing of a soul that was designed to love God and be filled by Him. However, if I continually place my faith and
hope in the Lord, I will always be satisfied.
I will always be loved and accepted.
Even when I am disappointed by things that happen on Earth. Even when God allows me to walk through
things that hurt or leave me wondering where God is, I can know that it is BECAUSE
He loves me and wants me wholly reliant upon Him for my fulfillment and
But, of course,
since we are humans, we will forget this.
We will tether ourselves to something here on Earth that will
disappoint us. We will attach ourselves to things or people
that were never meant to be our anchor.
And God, because He is a jealous God, will graciously allow those moors
to fail us. He will allow us to go
through something that will force us to place our faith in Him ALONE. And then, He will not disappoint us. He may not remove the storm from our lives,
but He will calm our spirits so that we can weather that storm. And we will be able to walk calmly because we
are securely tethered (attached) to the only One who has never failed or
faltered, and who will never leave us nor forsake us.