Troubling God with the little battles in our lives

July 13, 2020

There’s a story in the book of Joshua where Israel has just defeated the mighty city of Jericho with God’s guidance.

The people are celebrating their victory, but they also know that they have many more enemies to defeat before they get to settle in the promised land.

Next up were their enemies in a city called Ai.

So Joshua, their leader, sends some spies into the city just as he had done to the city of Jericho. The spies come back and report to him that the city is quite small and weak.

“Not all the army will have to go up against Ai,” they say, “send two or three thousand men…for only a few people live there.”

And so, that’s what Joshua does. He sends a small portion of his army to fight the city of Ai.

They had just defeated the mighty city of Jericho because God was with them.

How could they not defeat this tiny city of Ai too? God was, after all, with them…

…except He wasn’t.

One of the people in Israel’s army had done something shady in God’s eyes, and God wasn’t with Israel during this battle. As a result, they suffer heavy losses and Joshua ends up tearing his clothes in grief.

“We can’t really blame Joshua though, can we? How was he supposed to know someone in the army did something that he wasn’t supposed to do?

But this story isn’t just about that one guy. It’s about God.

In the battle of Jericho, Joshua had sent out spies, and then inquired of God, and God had given him the battle plan.

In the battle of Ai, Joshua had sent out spies; and somehow thought that this battle was too insignificant to inquire of God.

He didn’t get his battle plan from God. If he had, he would’ve known what was on God’s heart.

Joshua failed to rely on God because he thought that he didn’t need to ‘trouble God’ for a battle so small, and this resulted in their humiliating defeat.

Somehow, we have bought into this lie that there are battles in our lives that are too small for God – that we can face them on our own.

Somehow we have believed that we need to go to God only when we are in trouble, not realizing that we are in trouble all the time.

Somehow we have put God in the ‘you-deal-with-the-big-things’ box while believing He doesn’t care or need to help us with the little things we do in our every day lives.

And yet, nothing could be further from the truth.

We need God for every single battle in our lives; and it is only with Him that we can achieve victory in these battles – whether small or big.

Most of us believe that no circumstance or situation is too big for God.

But we need to also realize that no circumstance or situation is too small for Him.

I’m reminded of a quote by Paul Washer –

“I used to tell young preachers, in order to preach, you’ve got to have the power of God in your life. Now I tell them, in order to tie your shoes, you’ve got to have the power of God in your life.

Lean on Him. Pray about EVERYTHING. Inquire of God in every single thing that you do – whether big or small. He will not disappoint. He loves you, and He will show you the way.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. - Proverbs 3:5-6
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