“Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”
Joshua 24:14-15, NIV
One of the most inspiring passages in the Old Testament is the moment Joshua gathers the Israelites for one last official act as their leader. Like Moses before him, Joshua desired to lead God’s people in an act of worship. This was not an ordinary worship service. Joshua wanted to create a space bursting forth with celebration. Much like his own life, he knew the faithfulness of God. He had been so touched that his allegiance never wavered. As one who lived what he believed, he knew who he was and to whom he belonged. From the long dark arduous days in the wilderness to the ripe fruits of the Promised Land, Joshua remained faithful. He knew His Maker and His Maker knew him. And so, it was not surprising when he led his people in a ceremony of re-dedication. This covenant renewal was an act of re-commitment to God.
Joshua teaches us that life itself is all about choices. Each new day, we are confronted with the choice of whether to follow and serve God or not. This choice is not easy, especially when we find ourselves caught up in the circumstances of our own lives. Life happens. We become distracted and we lose sight of God. Overcome with worry, fear and anxiety, we feel out of control. And yet, what is in our control is how we respond to it. Choosing God and inviting Him into our individual time and space can be an act of re-dedication, commitment and renewal. It is a reminder that God is God and we are not.
As we usher in this day at the beginning of a new week, the question before each of us remains: “Whom shall I serve?”