“When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God and the Levitical priests carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before.” (Joshua 3:3-4)
It was the Christmas season right before our daughter, Natalie, turned two. She was in awe over the Christmas lights. It was just after Thanksgiving so only a few houses had lights displayed, but she wanted to see more. Christmas lights, in their bright, twinkling fashion, were a new and unfamiliar phenomenon to our little toddler. So exciting, yet with some amount of uncertainty. So my husband told her “keep your eyes peeled.” And she did and would become so excited when she spotted some. And every time, she got in the car, she would request to see Christmas lights and then would say, “I keep my eyes peeled.”
It’s sort of like that when you are on a journey following Christ. In Joshua 3:3-4, Joshua tells the Israelites, as they are about to embark upon their journey into the land the Lord promised them, with some amount of uncertainty and anxiety, ““When you see the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God and the Levitical priests carrying it, you are to move out from your positions and follow it. Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before.” In other words, “keep your eyes peeled” and the Lord will show you the way.
As we travel along this adoption journey, I have found myself in moments of uncertainty. Are we doing the right thing? Can we really do this? Are we doing all that God wants us to do to show his mighty power? Are we doing enough? But this verse that I read this morning reminds me that if we “keep our eyes peeled”, God will show us the way. We’ve definitely never “been this way before”, so we are relying 100% on God to lead us. And he will show us signs along the way. It may not be as obvious as seeing the arc of the covenant, but if we “keep our eyes peeled” and pay attention, he will show us. Some may be big, obvious signs, but mostly, I believe, it will be through small, subtle signs. Signs that are easy to miss if we’re not paying attention. He will speak to us through his word (which if we’re not reading it, we’ll miss it), through other people, and through the miracles he will demonstrate along the way.
Some of our “arc of the covenant” sightings (aka, God’s signs that we are on the right path) have been:
• Several recent contributions from unexpected (and some unknown) people
• People whom God has placed in our lives recently. One being another family who lives just 15 minutes away from us who is adopting another boy from the same orphanage, one of The Mayor’s friends. I mean, what are the chances? And what a blessing! Another person being Shannon Haas, the local artist who has volunteered her studio and time to help us raise funds, whom we had never even met before.
• And, of course, certain Bible verses that cross my path over and over again, as if God is shouting to me these messages.
And if we keep paying attention and looking to the Lord to guide us, we will “know which way to go” for every step we take.
"Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you." (Joshua 3:5)