One of the more difficult tasks in life is following in the footsteps of a legend. You often see this difficulty in sports. For example, who would want to be the quarterback following a Joe Montana, John Elway or Peyton Manning? All of your mistakes and failures would only be magnified as your play is measured up against the legendary stats of the man who preceded you. The same principle applies in most other areas of life as well, including ministry. I remember hearing someone say that you don’t want to be the pastor following a man who had a wonderful, long ministry. It would be much better to be the man who followed the pastor who followed the “legendary” pastor!
As we read through the first few chapters of Joshua, we see the transition in leadership of the nation of Israel, from Moses, who was well-known for his meekness, leadership and un-paralleled moments of intimacy with God, to their next leader- Joshua. Imagine being in Joshua’s shoes for a second. Wow, what a daunting spot to find yourself! Is it any wonder that we see a certain phrase used 3 times in the first chapter in God’s charge to Joshua; “be strong of a good courage” (vs 6, 9 and 18). No doubt Joshua was feeling some level of anxiety and in-adequateness at being the leader of God’s chosen people. Thus the encouragement from God Himself to Joshua to “be strong Joshua!” and “be full of courage!”
And so the Lord gives the same admonition to us today. Do you feel weak or overwhelmed right now with what life is dealing you? Do you feel weak and inadequate? Then “be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.” (Eph 6:10) What a wonderful reminder from our Father in this time of uncertainty and concern. Our God is in control and is intimately involved in our lives. Therefore brethren, be strong!