ODJ: i got this

September 8, 2015 

READ: Joshua 7:1-13 

Commit your actions to the LORD, and your plans will succeed (Proverbs 16:3).

I had been doing well in my university classes and assumed that my upcoming logic exam was no big deal. A lukewarm sense of complacency settled over me. You might sum up my attitude as “I got this!”

Unforgiving reality showed me I most certainly did not have this. My grade for the term plummeted. It seems my academic philosophy contained a misjudgement or two.

The historical account of Joshua ultimately shows how Israel unwisely banked on success with a “we got this” attitude. As they prepared to cross the Jordan River and enter the Promised Land, they sought God’s guidance and followed the priests who carried the ark of the covenant. (The ark represented God’s presence.) And in Joshua 6, as they made ready to “attack” the stronghold of Jericho, the ark was once again by their side (vv.6-7). So far so good.

But after the city walls miraculously crumbled, a man violated the direct command of God and took some of the plunder (7:1). Then Israel compounded their mistake. The men who went to scout out the next military target returned and said, “It won’t take more than two or three thousand men to attack Ai. Since there are so few of them, don’t make all our people struggle to go up there” (v.3). We have no record, however, of Israel consulting God on this one. Well, except for seeking Him after their humiliating defeat! (vv.4-9). Who knows what the outcome might have been if they had asked God for guidance?

We’re strange creatures—exhibiting a range from fear and timidity to conceit and hyper-independence. But God created us to live in community with each other and in reliance on Him. As we make it our habit to seek Him, He tells us, “Relax, I got this!”

—Tim Gustafson

365-day-plan: Luke 21:25-38

Read Matthew 14:22-33and look for Peter’s fascinating combination of faith and fear. 
What’s the difference between healthy confidence and unwise complacency? In what areas of your life are you prone to be overconfident?