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Celebration of hope

By John Bueno

Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you" (Joshua 3:5, NIV). When Joshua spoke these words, the Children of Israel had come to the Jordan River to cross into the promises of God. Forty years earlier they failed because they tried to do it in their own ingenuity.

Now many of that generation had died in the desert, and they were at the Jordan River again. Joshua was giving instructions: "When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God … you are to move out from your positions and follow it" (v.3). The ark was a symbol of God’s Shekinah presence. In our day we might say, "Stay sensitive to God and His will and His purpose for your life."

The same word comes to us as we think of the future of our church. I can think of no more important word from God to our hearts than to wait upon Him for His direction and guidance. We come in humility to the Lord of the Church and say, "O, God, we dare not do it in our own strength or wisdom; we depend upon Your power and Your direction and Your guidance."

When the Children of Israel began their journey from Egypt to the Promised Land, they came to the Red Sea – a body of water too deep and too wide to cross. The Egyptian army was behind them, and Moses cried out to God. God said, "Tell the people to move on [to march]" (Exodus 14:15).

You might be asking today, "Where are we headed?"

Hear the Lord say, "Just keep marching." He says to those who are in the persecuted church, "Keep marching." To those who are suffering from earthquakes or floods or fires, "Keep marching." To those who are engaged in spiritual warfare and don’t know how much longer their energy will last, "Keep marching."

God also said through Joshua to His people: "You will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before" (v.4). Wonders followed that marvelous experience of crossing the Jordan River. Today God wants to give us victories we have never experienced.

The power of our risen Lord is with His church and is with us in this hour. God wants to take us to places we have never been. God wants to do wonders in our midst.

Jesus says: "The ark of the covenant is before you; the power of My Spirit is directing your way."

We say, "Jesus, we will march. Continue doing Your wonders among us."


John Bueno is executive director of Assemblies of God Foreign Missions and oversees more than 1,800 missionaries in 163 countries. A son of missionaries, he pastored the Evangelistic Center (attendance 22,000) in San Salvador, El Salvador, for 25 years.

 

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