ODJ: a basket of fruit

August 9, 2015 

READ: Joshua 24:1-13 

I gave you vineyards and olive groves for food, though you did not plant them (v.13).

A wistful sigh escaped from the young mother as she made lunch for her daughter. Staring at the empty basket on the table in their cramped living space, she thought, We can’t even afford fruit. Then she said out loud, “If we could just have a basket of fruit, I would feel rich!”

Weeks passed, and God sustained the young family with the provision of simple meals. Still, the struggling mum continued to worry. One day, her little girl scurried into the tiny kitchen. “Look Mummy, we’re rich! We have fruit!” she exclaimed as she lifted up a full basket from the table.

In the conclusion of the book that bears his name, Joshua—now an old man—relayed a message from God to His people. He recounted their inauspicious beginnings, their escape from slavery and their great military conquests. “It was not your swords or bows that brought you victory,” Joshua said. “I [God] gave you land you had not worked on, and I gave you towns you did not build—the towns where you are now living. I gave you vineyards and olive groves for food, though you did not plant them” (24:12-13).

Joshua challenged his people to choose between the one true God and the pagan gods. As a reminder of their commitment, he placed a huge stone near the tabernacle (vv.23-27).

Like the ancient Israelites, a young mother and her daughter experienced the presence and provision of God. They enjoyed fruit from trees that had been planted in their garden years earlier by a previous owner of their house. If you visit them, you’ll probably find a basket of fruit in their kitchen. Much like Joshua’s big rock, it’s a reminder that God is the true provider of all we need.

—Tim Gustafson

365-day-plan: John 9:1-41

In Joshua 24:14-27, Joshua offers a warning and a challenge to the people. What is the warning (vv.19-20), and what is the challenge? (vv.14,23). 
What examples of God’s provision in your life come to mind? How will you thank Him today for His ongoing faithfulness and loving care?