By Dr. Sandy Kulkin
“Choose twelve men from among the people, one from each tribe, and tell them to take up twelve stones from the middle of the Jordan, from right where the priests are standing, and carry them over with you and put them down at the place where you stay tonight...These stones are to be a memorial to the people of Israel forever.” Joshua 4:2-7 (NIV)
How often do we forget the faithfulness of God? When we are facing difficult circumstances or storms, it can be easy to lose sight of who God is, and how he has always come through for us in the past. Memorial stones are major milestones that we can look back on to help us remember and recognize the amazing things God has done in our lives. Because of our memorial stones, we know that God will do it again, that he will continue to be faithful, and that he never changes.
God demonstrated his faithfulness to Israel over and over again when he delivered them out of Egypt. He parted the Red Sea, he provided manna from heaven, and he led them with a cloud and with fire, representing his constant presence with them. However, after 40 years of wandering in the desert in search of the Promised Land, the Israelites had grown weary and forgetful of God’s goodness to them. As they approached the Promised Land, God performed another miracle to remind them of his faithfulness. He supernaturally dried up the Jordan River so that they could cross over to the other side. God told them to mark this miracle with a memorial stone to help them remember his faithfulness.
“He said to the Israelites, “In the future when your descendants ask their parents, ‘What do these stones mean?’ tell them, ‘Israel crossed the Jordan on dry ground.’ For the Lord your God dried up the Jordan before you until you had crossed over. The Lord your God did to the Jordan what he had done to the Red Sea when he dried it up before us until we had crossed over. He did this so that all the peoples of the earth might know that the hand of the Lord is powerful and so that you might always fear the Lord your God.” Joshua 4:21-24 (NIV)
Ultimately, memorial stones are our testimony. Memorial stones give us hope, help us get clarity, and keep us passionate. Passion will help us move forward in life even when things are difficult.
How to Hold onto Your Passion in the Face of Adversity:
Look at things the way they are.
Don’t get emotional.
Make the decision not to give up.
Action Item: Write down a memorial stone of God’s faithfulness from the past year, and reflect on how this can give you hope for your present circumstances and your future.