After all the people had finished crossing the Jordan, the Lord said to Joshua, “Choose twelve men from among the people, one from each tribe. Tell them to get twelve rocks from the middle of the river, from where the priests stood. Carry the rocks and put them down where you stay tonight.”
So Joshua chose one man from each tribe. Then he called the twelve men together and said to them, “Go out into the river where the Ark of the Lord your God is. Each of you bring back one rock, one for each tribe of Israel, and carry it on your shoulder. They will be a sign among you. In the future your children will ask you, ‘What do these rocks mean?’ Tell them the water stopped flowing in the Jordan when the Ark of the Agreement with the Lord crossed the river. These rocks will always remind the Israelites of this.” Joshua 4:1-7
When God moves in our lives, we need to remember. Remembering helps our faith grow and encourages us when we’re struggling. Remembering is a testimony of our faith. It shows others the fruit of living within God’s will. It leaves a legacy – not just of our own faith but of God’s faithfulness. Remembering God’s presence becomes a map for those following us. People will be encouraged along their own journeys because of the signs littering the path along the way.
People in God’s Word have gifted us with signs of encouragement. Through their lives and their journeys of faith – complete with strengths and weaknesses – we’re encouraged to seek and trust God. We’re redirected when we stray off course. We dance with joy when we’re travelling along the beauty of God’s will and realize we’re in a sweet spot for a season.
The rocks we set to acknowledge God’s presence are not to build dwellings. We don’t set one rock on top of another because we’re remaining in the place God showed up. If we stay in that spot, there’s no reason for the rocks. We don’t need to leave a reminder for those who follow behind us, because we’re there as the reminder. If we don’t leave, we can’t leave a legacy. A monument is for remembering. Remembering indicates moving on.
When is one of your favorite memories of God working in your life?
Is your life exactly the same as it was at the time of that memory?
Can you think of any situations or seasons to which you tried to hold on longer than what you believe God wanted you to hold on – whether you realized it at the time or later?
Live It. Pick up a small rock today and write words on it throughout the day to describe God working in your life. As the sun goes down, place the rock somewhere someone will likely find.