This verse is located in a doozy of a passage. Moses has just died, and God is giving instructions to Joshua, who was Moses’ assistant, as he prepares to be the new leader of the people. Have you heard the saying, “I’ve got big shoes to fill”? Can you imagine following Moses??
God did so many amazing things through Moses – the plagues in Egypt, providing fresh water in the desert, and, oh yeah, parting the Red Sea. Now here is Joshua getting ready to take over. Those are certainly big shoes to fill!
Yet, in this commissioning of Joshua, the Lord ends with telling him to not be afraid, but instead be filled with strength and courage. Think about that for a moment! Moses is gone, you’re the new leader, and God speaks directly to you and tells you to be strong and courageous.
In this time of uncertainty and anxiety, few of us will be leading a nation, but we certainly are all leaders in our own right. You may not see yourself as a leader, but I guarantee that somewhere in your life someone is watching you. They are watching how you behave, how you speak, and your general countenance. They may or may not know that you are follower of Christ, but you are nonetheless an ambassador for Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20). You are the only representation of Jesus that some people may ever see. Many people won’t step foot inside a church – but they see you.
In your commissioning to go out into the world, God is telling you the same thing he told Joshua: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” How exciting is that?! The God who created the universe has promised to be with you. And with God by your side, how could you ever be afraid?
Use this verse as your anchor today as you go out into the world (or stay in as the case may be). Be bold. Reach out to someone you know who may be struggling during this time. Be the anchor for someone else as you hold on to the truth that God is with YOU!