I have lived the majority of my life next to the mighty Mississippi River. Every time I cross the bridge and peer down into the boisterous water I think I am very glad to be crossing the river on the bridge rather than by boat.
I am not afraid of water by any means, but I do have a healthy respect for the dangers a strong current possesses.
My husband preached on "Five Reasons the Wall of Jericho Fell" last night. It was a wonderful message (as always) and it influenced my Bible reading this morning. (And I am working on a narrative about it.... but that comes at a later day!)
But the part that caught my eye this morning was the Jordan River crossing.
Okay. I am a mom and a grandmother. I can get just a liiiiiiitttle protective of my kids and grandkids. My husband laughs at me sometimes saying that I go overboard. But, hey! I have seen stuff - and want all my little chickens safe and accounted for.
My point? Can you imagine all of these moms (how many ever millions there were) crossing the Jordan River with their children?
"Eli!! I said stay right here! Rebekah, please stop crying. It will be okay. Yahweh will take care of us. Abram! Do NOT GO NEAR THAT WALL OF WATER!!!! Do you want the entire nation to be drowned!!? Honey, do you think you could please hold Eli's hand? I am afraid we might lose him. No, Abram. I don't know why there is no mud. Eli, please do not pick up the fish. Rebekah, it is ok. You are choking me. I promise I won't let you go. ABRAM! DO NOT THROW ROCKS AT THE WATER!!!"
And then, what if your husband or son was one of the priests carrying the ark?
They were the first in and the last out.
Or what about one of the leaders of the 12 tribes. After everyone crossed and the priests were still in the middle with the ark, Joshua tells the leaders to go back in and get rocks to make a memorial with.
I am thinking my response might have been......
"Sure! Have US go down and get the stones. Let us be drowned like a rotten Egyptian. You just stay up there on the dry ground and we'll go get the stones for your little memorial. You could have asked us on the way. We could have just carried it out with us the first time!"
Or what about Joshua......
"Yahweh, You told me not to fear or be terrified. I am trying. These people are looking to me to lead them safely to the other side. Please be faithful to us as you were to Moses and that stiffnecked generation. You promised and I am counting on You God."
Maybe there was excitement that they were experiencing the miraculous like their fathers had seen.
Maybe they were in complete awe of the omnipotence of their God.
Maybe they were in reverence of His majesty.
Was there a holy hush as they walked through on dry ground?
Were they thankful they weren't being chased by Egyptians like their ancestors were?
Were they scared spitless?
Was there an underlying excitement of expectation of the miraculous in entering the Promised Land?
Were the wives and mothers wondering if they would lose their husbands and sons in battle against the people of Jericho?
And my biggest question:
How would I have responded to walking across dry ground in the middle of a river -with the walls of water on both sides?
I only pray I would have responded in faith and trust in the God that I love so much.
How about you?
Something to think about!
(Read Joshua 1-4)