Sometimes you are sitting in church, minding your own business, when all of sudden the preacher says something that causes you to squirm inside. Don’t you just love these moments?! You know what I’m talking about; the Word of God has taken your shoes off and the preacher is stepping all over your toes. You have two choices; take the message to heart or get defensive.
I had a moment like that this past Sunday. Let me share.
My cousin, Robert McManus (great guy, great preacher) was in town and my pastor asked him to exhort for a few minutes. I am always challenged by what he says so I was anticipating a good Word from God. What I got was a good dose of medicine.
Robert proceeded to speak to us about Joshua and battle at Jericho. Many of you know this story well. If not, read it here. We know that they marched around the city once a day for six days. We know that they marched around the city seven times on the seventh day. We remember Sunday School lessons about how they blew the trumpets and shouted and the walls fell down flat. But we often miss a very important detail; Joshua commanded that the people be silent until he commanded them to shout.
No talking? Not even a peep. Why? Maybe it was because every other time Israel was faced with an impossible situation (and this was an impossible situation) they began to complain and gossip. Israel didn’t tend to look at problems and say, “Oh cool, let’s see how God will work this out!” No, they reacted more like, “What are you doing to us God?! Why didn’t you just leave us in Egypt?”
This nailed me between the eyes. Confession time. I have been facing some situations that feel like Jericho walls recently. And guess what, I’ve been complaining. I’ve been airing my frustrations instead of trusting God. I have always wondered how Israel could rejoice in a miracle one day and complain at a problem a few days later. God revealed to me that I have been doing the same thing. My choice? I’m going to take it to heart.
From now on, when I am faced with a Jericho wall, I am going to do my best to Shut-up and Trust God.
What about you? Do you have any Jericho walls that need a good silent treatment?