First Mennonite Morton



  • Sep28Tue

    The Path Forward

    Victory after Victory September 28, 2021
    Filed Under:
    Faith, Scripture


    Proverbs 3:5-6 “ Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
    In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”


    As a new generation moved into the Promise Land, they found success when they followed God’s commands.  Their first battle, at Jericho, proved that obedience to God was paramount.  Perhaps they felt like they had attained newfound spiritual confidence never felt before.

    I remember as a child attending a Pine Ridge Christian camp.  The quality speakers, the time in daily devotions, even taking turns helping with daily meal clean-up all helped make camp a magical week!  I wanted that magical feeling to last forever, but something always seemed to snatch it away much too soon.

    The celebration that the Israelites experienced didn’t last long either.  The next battle was a tragic loss.  When we look into the events surrounding that loss, we see some things were neglected and some things were acts of disobedience.  Joshua neglected seeking God first, and Achen (one of the Israelites) disobeyed God by stealing things God expected to be given to Him.

    Those two principles, in a very simplified way, remind me of my childhood “camp” experience.

    The temptation after camp is to neglect seeking God regularly, and that can then bring temptations to disobey God.  Camp only lasted a week.  Each year the post-camp experience felt like a loss of that “mountain top experience” and resulted eventually in a loss of some battle.  What happened to my week of forming new habits?  

    Researchers say that it takes at least 2 months to form new habits.  The quick feeling of success can easily be replaced with defeat if new habits are discontinued.  The slow and steady determination to do what is right every day will soon bear its fruit in your life and form new helpful habits.

    What are the things which are helpful in your spiritual growth?  Does the habit of reading the Bible, attending church, giving of your time, talents, and treasures to Godly endeavors help you grow and mature?

    What are the things that distract you from walking closer to God?  The devil loves to discourage, distract, and destroy your walk with the Lord.  Our daily habits can make all the difference

    Joshua was a courageous leader by humbly coming back to the Lord after their first defeat.  He grew even more dependant on the Lord and found success only happens when talking with God was his daily habit.  Through hearing from God and obeying His word, victory is promised.  Maybe attending summer camp can’t be a habit anymore, but let's never lose those things which keep us close to the Lord and prepared for victory in whatever battle may come.  

    Lord. Help me to trust in you, to lean not on my own understanding but to acknowledge you in all I do. 

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