Decisions for the New Year (Joshua 24:13-24)
by Pastor Cesar Crisostomo | December 30, 2018
Joshua 24:13-24What’s ahead of us is a year of decisions for all of us. I’m sure you can agree that in some way or another all of us will make numerous decisions that will have significant impact upon our own lives, in the people we love and in the circumstances of our day to day life. Surely the days ahead of us will be filled with a lot of good days, but I am also sure that this coming year will also have its share of bad days as well. But it doesn’t really matter if our days are good or bad because God is faithful in the midst of it. Our God will always show us the way to go and the way to get out of bad days. Our God knows what is ahead and will go with us wherever we go and will help us, guide us and direct us. That is if we allow Him to do so.
I believe that there will be things that each of us are going to be called to do this coming year. I’m not simply talking about the things God is going to do, but more so and more importantly what you and I are going to be called to do by God. The message to Joshua and the Israelites is that they will be needing to make a decision. And the decision is who are they going to serve and who are they going to live for. The message for us today is the same and we too will need to make a decision. A decision as to who it is that you and I will choose to be Lord and God of our lives. You and I will need to make a decision as to how the Lord fits into our lives, our home, our family. Yes, a decision as how the Lord fits into our everyday lives.
Faced with a decision.
1. All of us are going to make extremely important decisions. In the days and the New Year to come you and I will have to come to a serious decision about making God first and showing it by how we live (vs. 14-15).· God reminded the Israelites of what they had is because of Him (vs.2-13). And because of all that He has done for them they were exhorted to trust the Lord and serve Him with all faithfulness and throw away the false gods that their fathers have worshiped and the gods of their conquered land. Joshua made a bold decision of commitment himself and proclaimed that he and his household will serve the Lord, seek and call upon His Name every day of his life (v.14-15).
· Understand that our lives are made by the decisions we make. When you look back at your life, you will see that where you are today and what you are going through now is the direct result of the decisions you have made. And grant it that you and I have made bad decisions and thank the Lord that we have made good ones too. Ultimately the decisions we make is what affects our lives. I often say that the decisions we make today will surely affect our tomorrows. The question is, What are you going to do? Are you going to be influenced by the worlds ways, by the pressure that comes from those around you or are you going to decide to choose to really follow God and love and serve Him?
2. All of us will be called to make decisions about real values that we choose and embrace.· It is one thing to say God is everything, but it is another thing to live it out. Are the values, commands, the ways of God really important to you and me? Why would you want to decide to choose to embrace the values of God? Familia, when you love the Lord, put Him first, respond and obey His commands, then it is for your own good. It will bring blessings and life. It is for our good and survival and the future of our lives and those we love.
· Deuteronomy 6:24 “The Lord commands us to obey all these decrees and to fear the Lord our God, so that we might always prosper and be kept alive, as is the case today.” We are commanded to be committed to His commands and teach our children, tell people how important the ways of God is in our lives. We are to bind them upon our hearts. (Deuteronomy 6:6-8; Proverbs 6:21; Joshua 1:1-9).
· Remember that God so loved that He gave His son and whoever receives His Him receives forgiveness of sin and eternal salvation. But He has also given us His ways, His commands, His principles for our benefit so that our life will have its highest fulfillment and riches blessings release when they are received and obeyed. God’s love is not separated from His ways and His commands.
3. All of us will reap great consequences from the decisions we have made and will make this coming year.· If you and I put God first and decide to choose to make Him Lord and commit ourselves to holding firm to what we know and believe are His commands and values, then God will honor and bless you and I for it. I don’t know how or when, but I know He would because He is faithful.
Each of us will make a decision to choose for ourselves this day whom we will serve, and may our decision be to choose to trust, serve, worship the Lord.