Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A day to remember

In this story we see children of Israel crossing over Jordan on dry ground.

Jos 4:1-8  And it came to pass, when all the people were clean passed over Jordan, that the LORD spake unto Joshua, saying,  Take you twelve men out of the people, out of every tribe a man,  And command ye them, saying, Take you hence out of the midst of Jordan, out of the place where the priests' feet stood firm, twelve stones, and ye shall carry them over with you, and leave them in the lodging place, where ye shall lodge this night. Then Joshua called the twelve men, whom he had prepared of the children of Israel, out of every tribe a man:  And Joshua said unto them, Pass over before the ark of the LORD your God into the midst of Jordan, and take ye up every man of you a stone upon his shoulder, according unto the number of the tribes of the children of Israel:   That this may be a sign among you, that when your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean ye by these stones?  Then ye shall answer them, That the waters of Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it passed over Jordan, the waters of Jordan were cut off: and these stones shall be for a memorial unto the children of Israel for ever.   And the children of Israel did so as Joshua commanded, and took up twelve stones out of the midst of Jordan, as the LORD spake unto Joshua, according to the number of the tribes of the children of Israel, and carried them over with them unto the place where they lodged, and laid them down there.

 After all of the children of Israel passed through the Jordan river, the Lord commanded Joshua to have twelve men gather twelve stones from the center of the river and take them to the place there they were going to camp that night.

Jos 4:19-24  And the people came up out of Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and encamped in Gilgal, in the east border of Jericho.  And those twelve stones, which they took out of Jordan, did Joshua pitch in Gilgal.   And he spake unto the children of Israel, saying, When your children shall ask their fathers in time to come, saying, What mean these stones?   Then ye shall let your children know, saying, Israel came over this Jordan on dry land.   For the LORD your God dried up the waters of Jordan from before you, until ye were passed over, as the LORD your God did to the Red sea, which he dried up from before us, until we were gone over:  That all the people of the earth might know the hand of the LORD, that it is mighty: that ye might fear the LORD your God for ever. 
The stones were placed in Gilgal.  The purpose of the stones was so the next generation would have physical item to help them remember what the Lord had done for the children of Israel. 

Sometimes it is very important for us to have physical reminders of what the Lord has done for us.  Each of us probably can look back at a trial in our life that we can say that the Lord was with us and did great and mighty works.  The stones that the children of Israel set up were their physical reminder that the Lord had done great and mighty works when He brought them into Canaan.

In our home we have have a plaque.  It is not the prettiest plaque, but that plaque is a physical reminder to us of how the Lord worked greatly in our lives.  When we had our house fire that plaque was on the wall.  The plaque says "There ain't nothing gonna happen today that me and the Lord can't handle together."  It is definitely not good grammar, but it hung on the wall as a reminder that we needed the Lord's help.  In the fire, the plaque was damaged by the smoke.  We sent it to the cleaning company to see if they could clean it up.  Unfortunately, they were unable to remove the smoke damage.

Today, that plaque hangs on our wall, smoke damaged and all, for one simple reason-it is our physical reminder of the Lord's greatness.  In the days and week following the fire we saw time and time again the Lord take care of our every need.  At times, the struggle that we faced was completely and totally overwhelming, but the Lord was right there with us, helping in our time of need.  The house has been restored, the emotional wounds have healed, but I never want to forget what the Lord did for us.  When we go through more trials and struggles in our lives, that plaque is a reminder that the Lord saw us through that fiery trial, and He will see us through our current trials.  In essence that plaque is our pile of rocks!  When our kids ask why we have an ugly, smoke damaged plaque on the wall, we can tell them about how great the Lord is.

What about your family?  We all face our own versions of a fiery trial, when we reach the other side do we have something, maybe a physical objects that helps us remember what the Lord has done?  Even if we don't have a physical item, do we talk to our children about the times in our lives that we saw the Lord's mighty works? 

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