DAILY VIDEO DEVOTIONAL
Decades ago, during the dark days of communism, a dear Romanian brother was traveling with me across his country, serving as my interpreter. It was very dangerous for him. Following the evangelistic meetings one night, he was walking to the apartment where he was staying. He knew someone was following him. His heart began to race. Fear gripped him. Then with one simple decision, he shattered his fears.
He had tried walking faster and faster to get away from the one following him. Finally he stopped and looked straight into that person’s eyes. In shock, the man turned and began walking away. My friend began following. The man fled, and so did my friend’s fears. That night, my friend learned a great lesson: The only way to overcome your fears is to face them.
There’s one thing I really appreciate about the Bible. It is so honest about its heroes. One of the Bible’s great men was Joshua. Yet we find that he had to deal with fear. In the beginning of the account of Joshua’s leadership, God has to tell Joshua four times “be strong and of good courage” (Joshua 1: 6, 7, 9, 18).
Joshua had much to fear. First, he had to deal with the fear of failure. Anyone who steps into leadership understands how powerful and paralyzing this fear can be. Joshua followed one of the greatest leaders of all times. During his forty years of leadership, Moses saw the Red Sea parted, the people fed manna daily, and many great signs and wonders. Could Joshua take the reins of leadership from such a great man of God? Certainly he had to deal with the fear of failure.
Second, he must have faced the fear of family and friends. Joshua knew how fickle the children of Israel were. He had seen them love and revere Moses when everything was going well, then become rebellious when things weren’t. Joshua must have battled the fear of rejection from those he loved so much.
I’m also sure that Joshua had to face a fear of the future. There’s a certain security in being under someone else’s leadership. When we’re second in command, we leave all the worries to the top brass. But when we are placed in the top position, we suddenly realize that the future of those we are leading rests in our hands. That is enough to cause anyone to tremble.
Finally, Joshua must have faced a fear of the foe. He had entered the Promised Land as a spy. He and Caleb had come back and told Moses, “No problem. Sure, there are giants in the land, but they are no match for our God.” That was easier to say when Moses was leading. Now Joshua was the leader. He had to put up or shut up.
So how did Joshua face his fears? One remarkable provision for facing our fears stands out in the first chapter of Joshua: the Word of God. First, Joshua had the promise of God. The Lord said to Joshua after Moses died, “No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Joshua 1:5). There’s nothing like the promises of God to enable us to face our fears. Too many Christians have sat for too long in the church premises — and have stood too little on God’s promises.
But Joshua also had the commands of God. The Lord said to Joshua, “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go” (Joshua 1:7). Obedience to God’s Word drives away fear. It gives a sense of victory, and it secures God’s provision.
God is looking for men and women who are courageous. I’ve been in some of the world’s most difficult areas. But I’ve never met a courageous Christian who wasn’t standing on the promises and walking according to the commands of God. Trust and obey; there’s no other way.
Isaiah : Chapter 41
8) “But you, Israel, my servant, Jacob, whom I have chosen, you descendants of Abraham my friend, 9) I took you from the ends of the earth, from its farthest corners I called you. I said, ‘You are my servant’; I have chosen you and have not rejected you. 10) So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. 11) “All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. 12) Though you search for your enemies, you will not find them. Those who wage war against you will be as nothing at all. 13) For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. 14) Do not be afraid, you worm Jacob, little Israel, do not fear, for I myself will help you,” declares the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.
Book of the Month
Sammy Tippit told his fiancée, “I can’t promise we’ll be rich, but life won’t be boring.”
Sammy had no idea what an understatement that would become. Beginning in the bars of Baton Rouge and the nightclubs of Chicago, Tippit has shared the news of life-changing faith in Christ all over the world – including in the middle of a revolution in Romania, the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, and war in Burundi and the Congo.
Sammy’s lifelong adventure has come at a great price. He’s been cursed, threatened, arrested, deported, and blacklisted. He’s also been personally broken, ravaged with illness, and devastated by grief.
Yet he continues to preach to in stadiums, in open fields, and via satellite technology to hundreds of thousands around the globe. For all other books…
About Sammy Tippit Ministries
STM has been providing inspiration and help around the world for nearly 50 years. Sammy Tippit, founder and president, is a world renowned counselor, teacher and evangelist with experience serving and helping people in over 80 countries. Sammy provides materials that help people tackle a broad array of social, societal, psychological and spiritual issues. He is particularly passionate about making materials accessible to other countries around the world. Sammy is married to Debara “Tex” Tippit, and they have two children and five grandchildren.
Sammy Tippit Ministries is a registered 501c3 non-profit organization.
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