Summer 2024

Daily Devotional: Wednesday, March 20 - Staying On God’s Path

“See, the Lord your God has given you the land. Go up and take possession of it as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, told you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” — Deuteronomy 1:21

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As I work with coaches and athletes, the No. 1 question I get is, “How do we know the Lord’s plan for our lives?” In the Bible, the Israelites were on their way to God’s promised land, but an 11-day journey ended up taking 40 years. Why? The same reasons we get off God’s path and away from God’s plan:

1) Distraction — God sent manna to feed everyone each day, but the Israelites started to complain when some foreigners reminded them of the good things in Egypt (Numbers 11:4-6). They were content until they were distracted by what others said and what others had. We, too, get distracted by what we don’t have instead of being thankful for what we do.

2) Doubt — God sent a group to explore the land He was giving them, but all except two came back and said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are” (Numbers 13:31). They doubted God’s plan, protection and provision. When we let fear take over our thoughts, anxiety steals our joy, and our need to control is greater than our desire to surrender. It’s often because doubt has replaced our faith.

3) Disobedience — Delayed obedience is still disobedience. Even after Moses reminded the Israelites that the Lord would go before them and fight for them, they refused to go to battle. The Lord got angry at their lack of trust and obedience, and told them if they fought now, they’d be defeated. Again they disobeyed and fought without God, and were indeed defeated (Deuteronomy 1).

As much as we can relate to the failures of God’s people, we can also be encouraged by God’s faithfulness. No matter how many times they failed, the Lord forgave them and continued to lead them. He will do the same for us.

— Sarah Roberts, University of Oklahoma softball chaplain

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