Since I’m a professional, I’m expected to dress as such. However, I love getting the occasional text from my boss saying we can wear jeans and a school shirt! Last night though the text was different and caused me to search my closet for pink to go with my jeans.
We have a very dear woman- Ms. Jennifer’ who works at WCHS and just over a year ago she received the dreaded diagnosis. She has gone through a few surgeries, many treatments, and still she goes on strong. She amazes me and I don’t let her know as I should.
Many times she has gone through treatments one day then been at school the next. I’ve worried some that her lowered immune system would make her susceptible to even the minor illnesses like colds that get passed around among students but she refuses to say away because she says she needs to help her kids. She has no idea the impact she is making on her kids, our staff and our district as she fights on, gives her all to her kids, and relies on God for each step.
I thought of Ms. Jennifer, friendships, and my church family as I read Joshua 22 and was reminded of how much we need each other and why. Let me share 3 truths I gathered from the Word but first we need some background…
When the Hebrews had finished wondering the desert for 40 years, they turned toward Canaan. They approached the Jordan River from the East and came upon good ground. So good that some of the people asked then-leader Moses if they could settle there. After seeking guidance from God, Moses allotted land to the Reubenites, Gadites, and half of the tribe of Manasseh with the stipulation the fighting men cross the Jordan with their brothers from the other tribes to help them conquer their land on the west side of the Jordan.
As we come to chapter 22, we see Joshua call the fighting men of Reuben, Gad, and half of Manassh to send them home after telling them they fulfilled their duties well as they fought side by side with their brothers.
As they returned, the fighting men decided to stop by the Jordan River on their side and build a huge altar. The leaders from the tribes on the west side were alarmed by news of the altar and sent a delegation to the leaders on the east. The leaders from the 2 ½ tribes received the delegation well and explained that since they were separated from most of Israel by the river they feared future generations in the west would tell their descendants on the east they had no part with them… thus the reason they build the altar as a monument of remembrance. The delegation was pleased with the response and went home praising God.
Three things we learn from this story about our brothers & sisters in Christ…
- First, sometimes we need to stand together and fight side by side. And remember our greatest weapons are those of prayer, love, and encouragement for the battle. Thus the reason those around my workplace will wear pink today.
- Second, we need to step up and call each other into account when it looks like one of our own is struggling in their walk with God. Just as people dieting and exercising benefit from working in a group to hold each other accountable for choices in food and exercise, so we as Christians can help each other walk a straighter path.
- Third, we can get our praise on together and celebrate the walk and the victories!
God, than you for the friends you have placed in my life to fight by my side, call me to account, and celebrate with me. I’m so blessed! Help me to be a good friend to them too!
And remember Ms. Jennifer in her fight! Strengthen her! May your will be done in her life and body as she shines your light so brightly among us all. Amen