A man goes into a restaurant and the waiter stops him. “Sorry sir, you need to wear a tie to enter”. So the man goes back to his car and looks around, but there’s no necktie to be found. So he takes his jumper cables, wraps them around his neck, ties a nice knot, and lets the ends dangle about. He goes back to the restaurant, where the waiter says, “Well, OK, you can come in, just don’t start anything.”
If Satan were to have his way in 2018, none of us would start anything or we would start it but never finish it. You’ve tried before and it didn’t work so don’t start anything. You will never make the trip until you take the first step. You can’t steer a car unless it is moving. So, let’s get moving and start something in the 2018.
One of the most powerful passages on this topic is found in Joshua 3:15-16: “Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during the harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing.” (NIV) This simple passage has many lessons:
Some obstacles are great, but the reward is worth it. God’s people were ready to enter the promised-land, but before they started this great adventure they had to cross the Jordan river at flood stage. If they started and allowed God to help them cross the river, they would then get the benefits of their faith: Harvest. God was taking His people into the new land, right when all the crops were ready to be picked etc. This meant that if they took the risk, they would be fed and taken care of in the future.
Someone is following our leading. It is evident that the priests were to go first and then everyone else would follow. Did you know that someone is looking up to you for an example and guidance? Almost everyone is a leader of someone. Just think, if you get some good things started in 2018, then others will follow that example.
Some burdens we carry with us, some we leave behind. The priests had to carry the ark into the river. God’s people were leaving the wilderness behind.
Many obstacles stay with us until we step out in faith. As soon as their feet hit the river it stopped flowing. Start something in the New Year. We step out and start something and our attention is no longer on previous problems. Do you think the priests were worried about the wilderness or the river? When we focus on new challenges, then the old problems are not as great as they once were. I hope and pray that you will start something great in 2018. Have a wonderful New Year!
Dr. Andy Spencer is the Senior Minister of First Church of Christ on Ledbetter Road in Xenia.