Joshua is facing one of the most terrifying moments of his life.
The legendary Moses is gone. All eyes are now on Joshua. He’s been given the task of leading a great nation into a land of promise. As he steps into his new position, armed with the authority in heaven, God says to Joshua, “Be strong and courageous. Move forward. Go beyond!”
Joshua is allowed to remember the past. He’s even called to honour the past. But God is telling him, “Don’t live in the past.” God wants Joshua to understand that while some personnel have changed, His purpose remains the same. “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See I am doing a new thing!” (Isaiah 43:18-19)
Folks, I believe God wants to use us – our ministries and our lives – for greater things in 2017. Last year 2016 has been quite amazing. But the future? I think it’s going to be even better. How do I know? Because God is in the future. And He’s waiting for us, and He says, “Go Beyond!” Go beyond striving into thriving, go beyond the status quo and beyond your comfort zone. He will take us beyond our purpose into His purpose, beyond barrenness into fruitfulness! That’s the theme for Shekinah in 2017.
The ability to forge ahead into uncharted territory takes courage and foresight. And no one, not even Joshua, can do it alone. If he is to take the people into the land of promise, he would need the help of outstanding leaders and committed people. As your pastor, my desire is that each of us will remember the foundations that are crucial to go beyond: constant refreshment in the Lord and covenantal relationships with one another.
As you start this new year, choose to deepen the most important relationships in your life – the ones you have with your biological family, spiritual family, and with the Lord. Seize every opportunity to grow and be open to the things He wants to teach you in the year ahead.
May you be refreshed and recharged to go beyond into the greater things of God.
Pastor Hock Cheng