Since we were talking about Ebenezers last week, I wanted to show you the one I’ve been building since I got to Florida.
You know that God gave me the plan for my immediate future in 2010, while I was in Arizona. During the third year that I was in Florida I received Joshua 1:5.
No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses. I will not leave you or forsake you.
I needed that verse in the early years of my life in Florida because I often believed that I was in some kind of wasteland. Even though His plan for me was falling into place exactly as He’d promised. I hadn’t been able to find a job since I’d lost mine in 2008 (and it was now 2013), I was still living in my parent’s house, and I still had doubts that I should be in Florida at all. I mean … maybe what I thought was “God’s Plan” was just something my brain cooked up and not from Him at all.
Getting this scripture brought me to my knees. It is, essentially, three promises in one glorious verse. This ‘gift’ from God came at a time when the devil had been bullying me with severe oppression over my inability to find a job. Furthermore, I wasn’t really hearing from God the way I had in Arizona and thought He had deserted me. The Holy Spirit put me quickly and firmly on the right track with this verse.
All three promises were important. The first “No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live.” gave me greater strength to thwart Satan’s lies. The third, “I will not leave you or forsake you.” reminded me that I wasn’t in a desert and far away from God. But the second part … oh the second part! “I will be with you, just as I was with Moses.” Man, that’s amazing. Do you remember how God was with Moses throughout the early books of the Bible? I can just imagine Joshua hearing this. Since he, too, was with Moses and knew how God interacted with him, did he fall over in awe? I certainly did. God hasn’t disappointed. He has made good on these promises and I knew I needed a stone to remember that He had helped me thus far.
The top stone is the verse God gave me after I’d been diagnosed with cancer and was crying one night to Him about everything in the Plan I’d hadn’t done. It was the last part in the plan and I’d dragged my feet and hemmed and hawed and had started – but had not finished the last phase.
My remorseful plea that lonely night was, “Am I going to die without finishing what you said I would do?” Tears flooding my pillow. That was followed by “I’m sorry, Lord.” And then came a fresh round of tears. I was sorry I hadn’t acted faster and now I might not have time to do what He called me to do.
It was the next morning that the Holy Spirit impressed Numbers 23:19 onto my heart:
God is not a man who lies, or a son of man who changes His mind. Does He speak and then not act, or promise and not fulfill?
Upon reading this verse I dissolved into a mass of tears again. But this time they weren’t tears of sorrow. Joy flooded my heart to almost bursting. What relief!
This scripture told me I wasn’t going to die – at least not before I finished His plan for me. It also promised that I would finish it, because God doesn’t lie, change His mind, or not honor His promises. At that moment, those were the sweetest words my wretched heart needed to hear.
Certainly a scripture worthy of an Ebenezer. So I found another stone and wrote the verse address on it. I never want to forget that here, again, was a time when God has helped me thus far.
So, did you think about using some sort of Ebenezer to remember how He has helped you too? I’m dying to know what you’re using. Let me know in the comments!