Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:8 (NLT)

We were camping at the resort owned by a family friend. Every night we’d go to the office store for ice cream. We’d order one scoop but the owner would always give us three with a wink and a smile. One night it was busy and an employee dished our ice cream. We ordered a scoop. She gave us a scoop. Fair enough, but we were a bit taken back. We’d become spoiled. We said nothing about it since we’d been given more than we deserved on other occasions. A short time later the owner came by and saw our dishes. She questioned why we had ‘such a small amount’. I explained what happened but emphasized that is was no big deal. She got up from the table and, a few minutes later, returned with new bowls of ice cream. Three scoops. The owner personally took care of the situation for us.

Perhaps a simple example, but it is always better to go to the owner when you want something done. The personal attention you get from the owner far supersedes the attention even the most dedicated employee can give you. Why? Because the owner isn’t answerable to anyone.

Joshua is about to take over the reins of leadership for the nation Israel. Moses is God. He is God’s man, God’s warrior. He was young. He was nervous. And, he already had a reputation among the people for being a renegade of sorts. You remember Joshua. He was one of the twelve spies that went in to investigate the Promised Land. When everyone else said the task was impossible, Joshua said, “Let’s go for it!”

A true leader has many fears. Perhaps the two biggest ones are:

  1. Will I lead in the right direction?
  2. Will the people follow me?

Your heavenly Father promises you that if you rely on him for direction he will not only be with you on the journey, he acts as a scout. He goes ahead of you. He makes sure the way is safe and that every possible danger is known and prepared for.

The second promise the Father makes is that he will never ever abandon you. Others may. Even those we consider trustworthy and loving may turn their backs on you. Not your heavenly Father. He’s prepared to go the distance. He’ll walk with you when no one else will. During those times when you feel inadequate for the task he is there to walk beside you, encourage you to press on, help you to believe in yourself (or his ability to work through you).

Regardless of where you are on the journey remember that you never walk alone and the path you walk has been walked before by a loving, gracious, merciful Father who is passionately in love with you.

PRAYER: Father, I don’t know the future. I feel alone, inadequate for the task and abandoned. Thank you that these are all lies. I’m not alone. I can rise to the occasion with your help. You will never leave me. Amen.

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