I am supposed to be preparing my lecture for this Saturday. I SUCK at staying on task when I am doing something I rather not do. Don’t get me wrong; it’s exciting (and a little nerve-wracking) to present to a group of my peers…but the prep part and going through the research part of it is so tedious and time consuming. I’m one of those super procrastinators that waits til the last hour to finally get things done. The stress of a near deadline drives me better and I end up putting out good work.
I have to admit, overall I am not good at preparing. I usually dive right for the end result, and let the details fall where they may. (However, I am not like this at work, and am all about the details…I need somehow make this flow over to my non work life.) When I have to prepare for something and wait to see how things turn out, I get sooo restless.
Right now I am restless. I am this squirmy, fidgety, five year old stuck in a 33 year olds body who’s been waiting, and waiting…and waiting for a long time for her promises to come. As I sit and squirm, that little voice creeps in that suggests that I start to offer suggestions or try to make plans that I hope will speed up my wait. I jump out of my little chair, walk over quietly to my Father and hand him my newest idea, my newest strategy to hurry things along.
He looks at them, considers them quietly then hands it back to me while saying,
“Sweet Pea, that’s a good idea, but I promise you that My way will be better, even if you can’t see it right now. Just sit back, relax and wait. I have everything handled.”
Those words bring instant comfort; I am reminded that everything is better when done in God’s timing, then I sit back down. For a while I am placated by those words and just enjoy not having to worry. Then restlessness returns. I can’t sit still. I fidget. I start to pace. I start thinking about the wait, wondering why things are taking so long, doubt creeps in…
And the cycle restarts.
I compose another plan, another strategy and rush it over to my Father. He reaches out his hand, takes it, considers it quietly for a moment and says,
“If I told you to go stand in the Jordan now, could you do it?” ( explanation below.)
“Wait, like now? Right now?”
“Yes, like right now? Could you do it? Do you feel prepared?”
“I think so. Maybe?”
He smiles and takes my hand.
“Restless does not mean ready. You must prepare. You still have doubts and ” what ifs” about the things you are waiting for. You must get rid of all doubt, all fear, all unbelief and be ready to stand when I tell you to stand. You must be strong, fearless and unwavering. You will have your Jordan moment. I need you to prepare. Abide in me and I will prepare your way.” He pats my shoulder and sends me off with things to read to help me prepare during my wait.”
So I prepare.
So I recently went to Queen Camp and got to learn about Joshua (my FAV!!) and crossing over the Jordan River. God has placed me back in Joshua for a while, so when I saw that this was our study for the weekend I was super excited.
Having a Jordan moment is a big deal. The Jordan represents crossing over from the old to the new. When Moses died, Joshua was responsible for leading millions to the Promise Land. To get over to Canaan and collect their land, they had to cross the Jordan river. The river was over hundred miles long. When they crossed, it was at flood stage so it could have been almost a mile wide. Not to mention that the river could be about 150 ft deep during flood stage. That’s a lot of river to walk through.
These guys could have gotten restless and taken the “easy” way, which could mean just jumping in and trying to swim to the other side. Or make a boat and paddle across. Or worse…give up and not cross at all. All these things would have been in their own strength and not trusting God.
God calls them to do the “crazy” thing, to step in the river WHILE IT WAS FULL, and then and only then would He stop it so they could cross over. They had to get in, get wet, put their feet in the sticky mud and walk through it.
And even crazier? Those priests stood holding a 600 lb Arc of the Covenant for 29 DAYS.
29 DAYS!!!! I thought it was a simple “priest step in, people cross over in a day, river goes back to normal, Yay Caanan!” Nope. Not at all that easy. 29 days, holding 600 lbs so that millions of people could cross over a space of 100 feet. Craziness! Although looking at this scene, along with what I see as just crazy, is also things that are just plain beautiful. They stood for 29 days holding 600 lbs, non stop. What great faith, courage, trust and obedience that took.
Even cooler than that, God gave them the strength to do it. There’s no way they could have done it on their own. God made them do the impossible. God took “crazy” and made it reality. It’s beautiful.
These guys had to be prepared. They had to be so full of trust, love and obedience of the Lord to make this work. They had to be courageous and not let fear or doubt get a hold of them. They had to look to God rather than to their impossible situation. They kept their eyes on Him, and they got to do something incredible. What if they rushed it? What if they doubted God for a second? It would have never happened.
So when you or I feel restless, and waiting on God seems tedious, think back to Joshua and the beautiful thing God did for the Israelites crossing the river. Remember God is for us, His plans are way better than ours, and it when it comes time to have our Jordan moment, God will be with us.