We were created to move forward and because of Him Who has called us and enabled us, we should be filled with anticipation for what we are journeying into in this coming year. “And they commanded the people, saying, When ye see the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, and the priests the Levites bearing it, then ye shall remove from your place, and go after it.” (Jos.3:5) “Remove from your place” actually means “to pull up tent pegs”. God is not the only One doing any activity. The prophet Micah doesn’t seem to be waiting for some outside stimulant to condition him. He takes what he already knows of his God and decides what his mindset and actions shall be. Mic.7:7 “But as for me, I will watch expectantly for the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation: My God will hear me.” I agree with the declaration: “I anticipate the inevitable, supernatural, intervention of God!”
The coming generation will anticipate something. Who will give them something to anticipate? Will they anticipate hopelessness or the possibilities of the God of the Bible? One of the biggest favors we can do the coming generation is to build anticipation into them, anticipation for the intervention of God, anticipation to see God do something no previous generation has ever seen. Every time people speak of tragedy and hopelessness, let us say to the coming generation, “BUT GOD….”. Let’s help them keep their anticipator alive and well and functioning at peak capacity. Let’s charge it up at every opportunity!
We may very well need to separate ourselves in anticipation of what we do not see in this moment so that we might see it in the next. We will need to separate ourselves from what we have not seen in the past year. In order to see what we need to see in the next moment (or the next year) we must separate ourselves from the distractions, interferences and disqualifiers of the present. Joshua’s instruction for the people to “separate themselves apart from” could include separating from such practical and mundane things as (1.) cynicism (2.) unbelief (3.) opinions of others (4.) from past disappointments (5.) from past events that never culminated in the desired outcome and (6.) from people who never followed through with influence or promises. Joshua’s words that seem to really stand out in 3:5 are, “Consecrate yourselves for tomorrow.” Anticipation is not an emotion but a matter of wise adjustments and preparation.
We can allow our anticipation for the future to be destructively fueled or to become toxic by various and sundry reports or we can separate ourselves from embracing and/or practicing superficial and culturally accepted norms. Josh.3:5 — “Then Joshua said to the people, “Consecrate yourselves, FOR tomorrow the LORD will do wonders among you.” We could, just as well, use here the word “sanctify”. It basically means “to set apart from”. That “setting apart from” is not so much an attempt to keep us from becoming “soiled” by someone or some thing, it is that we are being set apart for a purpose so that we can walk that purpose out without being tripped up or unnecessarily loaded down.
It is not unusual to hear something like, “But the guy who works at my office said ‘such and such’.” “But I read an article on the internet and it said ‘this and that’!” I have observed people making decisions and acting on something reported by a casual acquaintance or even a stranger. How often do we stop and measure the person speaking, much less the source and agenda of their argument? Why would we, in the moment, take their report as though they were expert on the subject (especially a total stranger on the internet) or that they are reporting it absolutely accurately? When we do not properly weigh information, no matter how zealously reported, we may likely end up with its consequences. Once we take a sober assessment of our personal history, many of us will probably find that we have been the recipient of those things we have anticipated that came out of an off-hand statement someone made.
As the people of God assemble today may they join hands and hearts and look toward the remainder of the year with expectancy for the purposes of the Lord in each other and the victorious intervention of the Lord in their behalf. “Paul, Silvanus (Silas), and Timothy, to the assembly (church) of the Thessalonians in God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah): Grace (spiritual blessing and divine favor) to you and [heart] peace.” (1Thess.1:1, Amp)
May the Lord make the remainder of the year, the people, circumstances and time of it, a fertile ground for your purpose and destiny to grow in. * May you grow beyond all the bounds of what you have been told you would never be and never accomplish. * May you outgrow the small view and reputation that family, acquaintances, church and culture have believed they had every right to keep you in. “God sent me to announce the year of his grace—a celebration of God’s destruction of our enemies—and to comfort all who mourn, To care for the needs of all who mourn in Zion, give them bouquets of roses instead of ashes, Messages of joy instead of news of doom, a praising heart instead of a languid spirit. RENAME THEM ‘OAKS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS‘ PLANTED BY GOD TO DISPLAY HIS GLORY.” (Isa.61:2-3, Msg)