When the people broke camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them. Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho. The priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stopped in the middle of the Jordan and stood on dry ground, while all Israel passed by until the whole nation had completed the crossing on dry ground.
— Joshua 3:14-17
If there is work to be done, SOMEONE has to take that first step.
God halted the flow of the Jordan River for the Israelites (notice how it echoes God’s parting of the Red Sea in Exodus 14).
If that wasn’t miraculous enough, the water level was at flood stage! Any attempt to cross the river would’ve been dangerous at this point in time. (The Israelites risked drowning. The rushing water would’ve easily swept them away.)
Notice verses 15 and 16 of this passage (“As soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing.”) In order for the people of Israel to cross the Jordan and into the Promised Land, SOMEONE had to first stick their toe into the water
What Jordan River is in YOUR life? Are you hemming and hawing, putting off making a major decision? Are you waiting for someone else to make the first move? Are you waiting for someone else to stick THEIR neck out?
Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.
— Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. —
Perhaps God is waiting on you to step out in faith. The same God who parted the Red Sea and held back the Jordan River can work a miracle in your life.
The Bible is filled with people who ran for the hills when called upon by God to do a great work:
- Isaiah tried to get out of being a prophet by saying that he was a man of “unclean lips” (Isaiah 6:5).
- Jeremiah tried to dodge God’s call to be a prophet by saying that he was too young (Jeremiah 1:6).
- Moses offered up excuse after excuse as to why he couldn’t lead the Israelites out of Egypt (Exodus 3:13; 4:1,10).
The same God who was with Isaiah, Moses, and Jeremiah can walk with you today, if you’ll let Him.