Spiritual Strength

July 1, 2024

 “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
– Joshua 1:9 (ESV)

“Muggsy” Bouges was the the shortest man to ever play in the National Basketball Association. At 5’3”, Bouges played point guard for four teams over a 14-season NBA career. It is reported that he had a 44-inch vertical leap and once blocked a shot by 7-foot tall Patrick Ewing. Along with his remarkable speed, agility, court vision, work ethic and mental toughness “Muggsy” became a fan favorite. What was it that set Bouges apart from others who had a height disadvantage? What was it that allowed him to compete on the highest level for so long? “Muggsy” had the heart to overcome! To overcome physical and athletic challenges is one thing, but what kind of heart does it take to overcome the spiritual challenges brought on by adversity? The pressure to perform, the fear of failure, and the frustration that often comes can be overwhelming and drive competitors to under-perform or even quit.

After Moses died, God called and empowered Joshua to lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. Joshua was a great leader who found himself in the middle of extreme adversity. What would he do? How would he face this challenging situation? Joshua did it by trusting and obeying the Lord God. When God told him to “be strong”, He wasn’t talking about physical strength, but spiritual strength. God was telling Joshua to trust Him for the outcome and to stay faithful during the process. It is important to remember that God will give us everything we need to accomplish what He has called us to do. We must trust Him and keep doing the right thing for the right reason, no matter the circumstances. We must learn to put our fear and selfishness aside. That is a sign of true spiritual strength.

Heavenly Father, help me to overcome my fears today. Give me the spiritual strength to keep doing the right things for the right reason. Teach me to take my eyes off of my circumstances and to focus on You. Like Joshua, may I simply trust and obey. In Jesus’s name, Amen.  

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