Are you familiar with the feeling of doing something 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 barrage of thoughts that are zapping your energy? These are tiny of glimpses of slavery and 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 slavery in Egypt for 430 years. We are introduced to Joshua in the desert after their release and we see him believe God when few others did, in the tent of meeting with Moses. We are introduced to him as a free man, but Joshua too, grew up as a slave. Just like every other short-sighted, fear-based Israelite who couldn’t believe in God’s goodness beyond their own past experiences, Joshua grew up a slave. However this man, unlike Moses and almost all Israelites, did cross over in to the promised land. Joshua was able lead others that had only tasted freedom into God’s promises, despite having grown up in a culture of slavery.
We often eliminate ourselves for so many things. We look back at our lives and say, “But I’ve done this, or this happened to me, or I endured this,” and we have these road blocks in our minds to believing our own happiness, our own strength, our own victory. We tolerate slavery in little ways, we endure being emotionally or mentally kept into places we want to leave, but why? Joshua is a man that had every excuse like everyone around him had to stay in his slave mentality. All of his peers. Comparison. Justification. Do you see how we’ve been treated? Do you see what we’ve been through? But he carried no excuses in his soul to not believing God was everything he imagined he could be and more. You see God never joins in slavery with us. Even as Christ in flesh, Jesus was not a slave to anything. God never tolerated being pushed around. It’s not who you are even if its where you’ve come from.
Your experience with slavery does not disqualify you from leading yourself and others into God’s promises. It does not disqualify you from achieving the impossible. It does not negate your unearned inheritance.
Joshua, the slave who acted like a king. The man who had slavery as the norm in 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. Your origins are free of all 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 the one who led the people into the land of inheritance, Joshua, was the one born a slave who believed God enough that he became a king in his inner man. By that I am inspired.
Maybe Joshua was given the command of being courageous because he doubted. 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.”