There are going to be times when people who love you the most will try to persuade you to become someone else. They invalidate your decisions, making you feel guilty about the past and anxious about the future. Don’t be discouraged.
When Moses was leading the Israelites in to Canaan, the promised land of milk and honey, twelve scouts were sent out for reconnaissance. Ten came back and said to Moses, “The city walls are enormous and the people are just as large. God can’t help us. We’re screwed!” Then they started to blame God and Moses, regretting that they had ever left their life of slavery in Egypt, where at least they didn’t have to die in battle, blah blah blah blah… But two other guys, Joshua and Caleb, came back and told Moses: “We are going to eat these guys for breakfast.” They had faith in God’s word. They trusted His promise.
After Moses died, God appointed Joshua as leader of the Israelites and said to him, “This is my command-be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua obeyed Him, and led the Israelites through a series of conquests that fulfilled God’s promise to lead them into Canaan, the land of milk and honey.
Solitude continues to be my engine for growth. It’s easy to be discouraged and try to give into the impulse to follow what everyone else is doing. It’s easy to give in to the security of conformity. It’s easy to play yourself off as a “nice” person so you won’t threaten other people’s sense of self-worth. Some people tiptoe through relationships just so they won’t cause any conflict. Underneath this niceness is a fear and hostility, setting the condition of “i won’t make you feel bad so don’t make me feel bad.” Complacency is the quickest route to mediocrity. We must have the courage to hold onto our faith and have the audacity to maintain a level of integrity with ourselves no matter what kind of threat the world throws at us. Let us believe. Be strong and courageous. God COMMANDED Joshua to be courageous.