March 25 | Daily Devotion

Lectio Continua: a continuous reading of every verse

Lectio Semi-continua: shorter reading selections from the passages

Lectio Divina

“…Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the Lord my God wholeheartedly.’” ~Caleb, Joshua 14:9

Once again, a complete map of the land of promise would be handy for understanding the detailed land allotments for each tribe of Israel. The place names and land descriptions read like something out of a Tolkien novel: Scorpion Pass, the Wadi of Egypt (wadi=wilderness stream), the Valley of Achor, the City of Salt, the coastline of the Great Sea.[1] But every location is real and every one is a blessing being distributed to the people. In fact, one of the reasons these details are recorded is to remind future generations, including our own, that the land is God’s blessing upon His people. These records are more than “land claims,” although they may have functioned that way, in part. The property records are a written memorial of sorts, an everlasting reminder that everything from Scorpion Pass to the coastline of the Great Sea to the City of Palms (Jericho) is a gift from God’s hand.

The simple lesson in Israel’s land allotments is that God sovereignly bestows blessing on people. Sometimes there is a clear line drawn between behavior or attitude and blessing. For example, Caleb’s special allotment is his because of his faithfulness. Other times, we aren’t sure why God gives what He does to whom He does. Suffice it to say, God blesses whom He will bless.

Have you considered that your blessings are from God? Your talent, your family, your home, your vocation, all from Him. Embrace them as His sovereign gifts to you! And if you desire something more or something different, there is no sin in asking. Ephraim and Manasseh asked for the land on the other side of the Jordan, and God said yes. Caleb’s daughter asked for springs in the Negev (the coastal region of southwestern Israel), and her father said yes. Turning to God for blessing pleases Him. Do keep in mind though that, as He is the keeper of all good things and the sovereign of the universe, He knows best what will make us happy. When we embrace our blessings as gifts from Him, we learn to thank Him, praise Him, and also TRUST Him. Be confident that He gives good and right gifts and enjoy what He determines to give you, whether it is exactly what you asked for or exactly what you need (or both!).

[1] Biblical scholars know the location of many of the major cities and geographical features in the land of promise. However, they haven’t yet identified all the landmarks and boundaries since some of them are buried under 3, 000 years of ancient ruins.

Lectio Divina is written by F. Lionel Young III, who serves as the senior pastor of Calvary Church in Valparaiso, Indiana. He is the author of A New Kind of Missionary, a popular introduction to global Christianity.