Are you familiar with slavery? Familiar with the feeling that your doing something you’ve told yourself you’d rather not do? Are you familiar with the feeling of having to fulfill an obligation no one could pay you enough to fulfill? Have you felt like the victim of your own onslaught of thoughts? These are just the tiniest of glimpses of slavery and they are foreign to your true self. You, in essence, are created to live without any other king but you and your God as the best of friends basking in the glorious responsibility of true freedom.
There’s a man named Joshua in the bible, torah, and koran who is Moses’ right hand man while the whole clan of Israelites have just been divinely freed from complete slavery in Egypt for 430 years. We are introduced to him in the desert after their freedom and we see him believe God when few others did, we see him in the tent of meeting with Moses when no one else was, we see him in his freedom. But Joshua too, grew up a slave. Just like every other short-sighted, fear-based Israelite who couldn’t believe in God’s goodness beyond their own experience of it, Joshua grew up a slave. This one that did cross over in to the promised land, this one that did lead others into promises, this one that was entrusted with the fulfillment of century old dreams, grew up in a culture and people of slavery.
We often eliminate ourselves for so many things. We look back at our lives and say, but I’ve done this, this happened to me, I endured this, and we have these road blocks in our brains to believing our own happiness, our own strength, our own victory. We tolerate slavery in little ways, we endure being emotionally or mentally ridden into places we want to leave, but why? Joshua. He’s a guy with every excuse that everyone around him had. All of his peers. Do you see how we’ve been treated? Do you see what we’ve been through? But he carried no excuses on his sleeves to not believing God was everything he imagined he could be and more. You see God was never in slavery with us. God never tolerated being pushed around. It’s not who we are even if its been where we’ve come from.
Your experience with slavery does not disqualify you from leading into your promises. It does not disqualify you from achieving the impossible. It does not negate your un earned inheritance.
Joshua, the slave who became a king. The man who had slavery permeating his culture of origin. But he spent time with the never-slave God. The free God who spoke, interacted, and existed without being forced to be or do anything but who lives as love and calls us to the glorious freedom of the same. You are free from slavery.
Moses! Of course Moses was chosen to lead the exodus, he grew up in the kings house, he experienced the kings freedom, he saw the world from the perspective of ruling since birth. But Joshua, the one who led the people into the land of inheritance, Joshua, the slave who believed God and became a king. By that I am truly inspired.
Maybe Joshua was given the command of being courageous because he had doubt. Maybe was given the command of being strong because he was familiar with feeling weak. “Be in my likeness,” God was inviting Joshua, “You don’t have to stay in the likeness you’ve come from or see being displayed around you. Listen to me, I’ve invited you, come and lead in what it feels it feels like to be free.”