I am dancing to a song I don't know. Is it in the key of C? I'm not sure. I don't recognize the tune. I don't know the song. I stumble along. Awkward. Disjointed. I have no idea what is coming next. Should I shuffle right, left, dip, jump, kick or twirl? I don't know. This is all new. I'm trying to figure it out. It is a new song. It is a hard song. Shouldn't I be catching onto the rhythm by now? Does anyone recognize that I don't know this song and am stumbling?
Sometimes life finds us trying our best to dance to a song we don't know. And maybe don't want to. We'd rather be dancing to a different song. One we know. One we are familiar with. A happy song. But we don't always get to choose the song we dance to. Not in this life. A wayward child. Sick parent. Cheating spouse... So many harsh notes can form a song.
I think back to a book my children loved for me to read before their sleep. We're Going on a Bear Hunt. This family encounters different obstacles along their way. Forests, rivers, snowstorm, mud. They kept repeating, "We're not scared. Can't go over it; can't go under it; we've got to go through it."
"Got to go through it." There is no way out of this song. I have to do my best dance until it is over. Maybe I will get better as I go. Maybe I will not. Either way, there is no getting around it. No going over it. No going under it. Got to go through it. Others are depending on me to do just that.
But how? I've been reading through the book of Joshua, and what's struck me is how many times God told Joshua to not be afraid or discouraged as he battled enemies to gain territory God had promised to him and his people. He took it a step further and said, "Be strong and courageous." Once he even followed that up with, "Be strong and very courageous. Like an exclamation point. (Joshua 1:7)
But this is just half of it. This instruction is always followed with the why. "For the Lord [master, teacher, Jesus] your God is with you wherever you go."
This is such a comfort. God is with me. This call over 300 times in the Bible to not be afraid must have weight. Impact.
I will remember all who God is and that he is with me and sing it loudly as I dance.
This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. – Joshua 1:9