Crossroads: Signs and Wonders

Crossroads_family_web

Joshua 3:7-17

Your Story

Talk about a time when it felt like God gave you a sign. You knew what you were supposed to do because God showed you very clearly. Perhaps it was someone who spoke to you, or something that happened, or an actual sign, but talk about how God showed you what to do.

My Story and the Bible Story

A friend of mine is a Kindergarten teacher. And she became a Kindergarten teacher after God spoke to her. She saw the word “Kindergarten” in big, bold letters in her Bible one day. Afterward, she tried to find it again and couldn’t. One day, though, she was reading something in her Bible and there she saw it: the word Kindergarten, in letters the same size as everything else on the page. Her Bible was a devotional Bible, and the word Kindergarten was in one of the devotions. It wasn’t actually bolded in there, but on the day that God spoke to her, it was. She knew very clearly what she was supposed to do because God showed her.

Read Joshua 3:7-17. From the NIV: And the Lord said to Joshua, “Today I will begin to exalt you in the eyes of all Israel, so they may know that I am with you as I was with Moses. Tell the priests who carry the ark of the covenant: ‘When you reach the edge of the Jordan’s waters, go and stand in the river.’” Joshua said to the Israelites, “Come here and listen to the words of the Lord your God. This is how you will know that the living God is among you and that he will certainly drive out before you the Canaanites, Hittites, Hivites, Perizzites,Girgashites, Amorites and Jebusites. See, the ark of the covenant of the Lord of all the earth will go into the Jordan ahead of you. Now then, choose twelve men from the tribes of Israel, one from each tribe. And as soon as the priests who carry the ark of the Lord—the Lord of all the earth—set foot in the Jordan, its waters flowing downstream will be cut off and stand up in a heap.” So when the people broke camp to cross the Jordan, the priests carrying the ark of the covenant went ahead of them. Now the Jordan is at flood stage all during harvest. Yet as soon as the priests who carried the ark reached the Jordan and their feet touched the water’s edge, the water from upstream stopped flowing. It piled up in a heap a great distance away, at a town called Adam in the vicinity of Zarethan, while the water flowing down to the Sea of the Arabah (that is, the Dead Sea) was completely cut off. So the people crossed over opposite Jericho. The priests who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord stopped in the middle of the Jordan and stood on dry ground, while all Israel passed by until the whole nation had completed the crossing on dry ground.

God promised Joshua that the people would know that God was with Joshua and that God was showing Joshua what way to go. The people needed to trust Joshua to lead them, like they had trusted Moses to lead them. Moses was gone, and the people now needed to follow Joshua. So God promised a sign to show them the way. God parted a sea again! This time it was the Jordan River. When the priests carrying the Ark of the Covenant (where God’s presence lived) put their feet in the water of the Jordan, the river stopped flowing, just as God promised. In fact, it created a wall of water, just like the Red Sea did when God parted that too. And the Israelites crossed safely on dry land. The priests stood there with the Ark of the Covenant (God’s presence) until everyone had crossed. From then on, the people could remember the day that God showed them a sign: a sign that God was leading Joshua, and that God would keep the people safe.

There are a lot of signs and wonders in the Bible, especially in the Old Testament. God used the burning bush to talk to Moses. God parted the Red Sea. God turned Moses’ staff into a snake and then back into a staff. God parted the Jordan River. There’s even a passage that talks about God making time stand still. Jesus performed miracles in the New Testament. God showed the people who God was, and how much God loved them. Sometimes it seems as if God doesn’t speak to us today. After all, we don’t really have burning bushes or seas that part or Jesus walking into our churches and performing miracles. But, if we pay attention, God still performs signs. God still shows us God’s presence. Sometimes God sends us a friend when we need one the most. Sometimes God uses other people to speak to us. Sometimes we feel God’s presence in the wind or when we see a rainbow or when the leaves change in the Fall. Whatever it is, God’s presence is still with us. God still speaks to us. And God uses people, things, and even nature to speak to us. So pay attention. Look for God’s presence. Listen for God’s voice. Look for signs that God is there. And when you hear from God, do what God says.

Discussion

• Ask your family about times when they felt like they heard from God. What happened? Did they do what God asked them to do?
• Talk about different ways we can hear from God (through our friends or a family member, through nature, through the Bible, through church). Talk about how we can know that something is from God (it doesn’t hurt anyone, it can be a way to show God’s love, it seems consistent with who God is).
• How can we pay attention to God? (Pray more, slow down a bit, read our Bibles, look around us more, listen to our friends and family members.)

Prayer

Thank God for always being with us. Ask God to show you what God wants you to do. Ask for help in paying attention to God’s signs.

Jessica Asbell is currently serving as the Minister to Children at First Baptist Church of Roswell, GA. She has worked with children in various capacities at several churches, including Winter Park Baptist in Wilmington, NC, First Baptist of Decatur, GA, and Highland Hills Baptist in Macon, GA. She has a Master of Divinity from McAfee School of Theology and a BBA from Mercer University. In her spare time she loves to read, watch movies, and of course spend time with her sweet kitty, Lucy.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment

*