by Tyler Roberts

"Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Be strong and courageous. This is what the Lord will do to all the enemies you are going to fight." Joshua 10:25

What is it that is standing in your way, that continues to hold you back from the full life that God has for you? What keeps you up at night or discourages you from taking hold of everything He has promised? Today can be different than yesterday. His mercies are new, and He is with you!

To be honest, I’m not usually the most courageous or brave person. In fact, many times I let my insecurities and fear of making the wrong decision dictate how I live my life. It is exhausting! Often, it just feels like a ginormous, sweaty man has me pinned down and won’t let me up.  I keep tapping out and screaming “uncle,” but the weight never seems to fully let off. Other times, it seems my rhythm continues to be one step forward and then two steps back.  It negatively impacts my personal and professional life. From time at home with my family, time spent at work, or time spent alone, my mind is constantly warring. The fears of failing, being overlooked or making the wrong decision plague most of my days. The noise just never seems to quiet, except for when I cower down and play small.

However; we weren’t created to play small! No; we were created with purpose and with a calling to fulfill. Jesus came that we may have life, and life to the fullest! So, why would we ever play small or forfeit the life he has for us? It’s time to be lionhearted and confidently put all of our trust in Him. The Lord says to be strong and courageous, not afraid. He goes before. He fights. He defends us. He said He’d never leave! Therefore, we must stand up and fight whatever barricades are standing in our way.

I love the story of Joshua.  In chapter 10, Joshua leads Israel to defeat the Amorites and protect Gibeon. But it is a small line from verse 24 that continues to stick with me.  After winning the battle, Joshua has his army snuff out the five kings of the Amorites that remained. Once they are revealed, he tells his commanders to “Come here and put your feet on the necks of these kings.” He then has them killed and says “This is what the Lord will do to all the enemies you are going to fight.” I know, I know – this may be somewhat of a random and aggressive verse to stick with. However, I believe there is so much power in this small passage. We have to reveal the kings that are standing in the way of obtaining all that God has for us. I believe these “kings” represent fear, insecurities, worry, debt, doubt, low self-worth, anxiety, pain, loss, pride, and the list goes on. Whatever it is that is keeping you away from anything God has for you is a king that needs to be removed.

So, I’ll ask again: what is it that continues to hold you back from the full life that God has for you? I challenge you to snuff it out, put your foot on its neck, and remove it from your life. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged! Your God is with you, and He will fight on your behalf. He will crush and remove any fear, doubt, or lie of the enemy! There is nothing too big for our God to overcome! Let Him free, strengthen, and encourage you today.

Lord, encourage us to not play small or accept anything less than what You have for us. Instead, help us to be strong, courageous, and confident. Jesus, please reveal to us anything that is keeping us at a distance from You. Let us identify it and remove it. We trust You, Father. Thank You for always being so good and faithful.