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Fresh Courage: Sun, Stand Still

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In Joshua Ch10, we read about Joshua praying a bold courageous thing - that God would literally stop the sun in the sky. He doesn't start with "Dear Lord", and he doesn't end with "amen". He doesn't even pray the right words scientifically. And yet, God invents the first PVR!

There are many theories of how this happened. The question I have, though, is if you are trusting for miracle, are you more concerned with how it happens, or who is doing it?

What is your “Sun, stand still” prayer? It’s easy to believe that God would do something like that for Joshua, but would he do it for you too? It’s time to believe God for the impossible!

While many of the prayers that we pray are good, sometimes they are a bit small. Our prayers are directly related to what our view of God is

If you're ASK is not big, maybe your view of God is too small?

Paul shares this amazing prayer:

2 Thessalonians 1:11 (NIV) With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith.

There are three things in there: Orientation. Invitation. Determination.

Orientation - living a life that is turned towards God; worthy of that calling that He has made us worthy of. In short, choosing to do the right thing, even when we have made mistakes.00

Invitation - that by His power, God would bring to completion desires for goodness. The will of God is good, pleasing and perfect (Rom 12:2)

Determination - that by His power, the actions we take will have impact, a faith filled determination.

The same three things are evident in the Joshua / Sun, Stand Still story.

The miraculous outcome begins with a mistake. Israel makes a treaty with the Gibeonites in Ch9, without enquiring of the Lord. This leads to some complexity when they turn out to be neighbors and not travelers from far off. However, Joshua chooses to do the right thing. Not the easy thing. Not the popular thing. But the right thing. He sticks to his word, even when the rest of Israel wants to take the Gibeonites out. And then, he rallies the troops to fight on behalf of the Gibeonites when they are attacked by the 5 king coalition. I wonder if the way Joshua acts, with integrity and honor, after releasing a mistake had been made, was not the set up for the miracle. It's an orientation toward God, doing the right thing, once a mistake is realized.

There must have come a point in the battle where Joshua remembered what God had promised, that none of the enemy would be able to stand against them, and what he was seeing didn't line up with what God had said. This may have been the prompt for him to pray his bold prayer - and invitation for God to do the miraculous. To see the sun stand still. He linked his prayer to a promise of God, and he prayed it publicly. There is something in this; praying a big bold prayer publicly - because when it happens, people will know, it is only God that could have done it. Perhaps the prayers we pray should be crazy enough to make people think we are crazy!

What Joshua prays for is telling. He doesn't pray for an outcome. He prays for an opportunity to be part of the journey to the outcome. Basically he is saying, "God, keep they lights on, so that we can finish the job". Determination, prompted by faith. A lot of the prayers we pray are outcome focused. What if we began to shift them to be opportunity focused. Instead of praying for God to save this or that person, how about praying that God would give you the opportunity to be the one who leads them to salvation?

Orientation. Invitation. Determination.

I'm trusting that this message is just a catalyst to change the way you pray. To raise the faith in your heart. To believe God for the impossible. What is your Sun, Stand Still prayer? Will you be bold enough to pray it, and ask for an opportunity to be part of the journey to the outcome?

Ephesians 3:20-21

20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

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