Summary: Do you remember the good times in life? God told Joshua to make sure and remember by setting up a memorial. He said when your children ask, remind them of my goodness!
OPEN: Every person, no matter who they are has struggles in life. Problems and difficult times come to everyone.
Jesus said that “…in this life we will have trouble” (John 16:33) …and we know that Jesus didn’t lie.
But you know, the opposite is also true… In this life we are also going to have good times too. In fact, the truth is we will probably have more good times than bad; it’s just that we probably remember the bad times more than the good times.
If you have your Bibles, please stand with me and open them to the book of Joshua, Chapter 4.
(Read Joshua Chapter 4,, verses 1 through 7)
TEXT: Now just to give you some background here, the children of Israel had been held in bondage in Egypt under Pharoah. Moses negotiated their release, and with God’s supernatural help, they were set free. Then they went through the desert, spending forty-years in the desert with Moses as their leader.
We can only imagine how much trouble they faced. Bible scholars suggest that somewhere around two-million people were with Moses in the desert. Imagine having to feed two million people, clothe two-million people, listen to the problems of two million people. Imagine having to wash clothes for two million people! Whew! How difficult that must have been!
But finally, Joshua (who was the leader under Moses) takes them to the other side. On this side (motion with hands) there is hot, dry desert. But on this side (motion with hands) was the promise land, a very beautiful place.
Well, while they were crossing the Jordan River, which separated the dry land from the Promise Land, God tells Joshua to take twelve stones (one for every tribe) and stack them up as a MEMORIAL FOR WHAT I DID FOR YOU.
IN OTHER WORDS, WHAT GOD WAS SAYING WAS….
(EVERYBODY TOUCH YOUR NEIGHBOR AND SAY “REMEMBER WHEN”)
Then God said to them “when your children ask you, “what does this mean? What are these stones for”? You can tell them how I provided for you.
Church, that is what we need to do this morning as well….WE NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN!
# 1 – WE NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN HE BROUGHT US UP!
STORY: I remember when Tommy and I had nothing. We got married young and those early years were really a struggle in so many ways. Shortky after we got married, we went into full-time ministry. I remember our first ministry position. We were in a little church in Round Rock, Texas. We lived in an old farm house that was built in 1904. It had no air conditioning, no central heat, and usually it didn’t have running water. The house was built before they started using insulation so it was real hot in the summer and really cold in the winter. (tell the rest of the story)
And even though we don’t live in a mansion now….the Lord has brought us a long way!
We need to remember when we had nothing and how the Lord brought ALL OF US UP! We need to understand that the blessings are from the Lord. Not because we are smart or good with investing…but it is because the Lord has blessed us.
Deuteronomy 8:18 says “it is he (God) who gives you the ability to produce wealth…”
Are there stones in your living room? Do you remind yourself and your children that it is God who brought you up? Do you remember when he brought you up?
TRANSITION; NOT ONLY DO WE NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN HE BROUGHT US UP…WE ALSO NEED TO REMEMBER WHEN HE BROUGHT US OUT!
# 2 – REMEMBER WHEN HE BROUGHT US OUT!
Q. Do you remember when you first got saved?
Q. Do you remember how excited you were?
Q. Do you remember how it felt like ten thousand pounds was lifted off of you?
STORY: I remember when I first got saved. You see, some of you may not know that I was raised Catholic. I went to a catholic school. I went to Catholic Catechism. I went to Catholic masses. I did pretty much all the same things that every other Catholic person did. (tell your story of how you got saved)…..
Q. Why do we lose that excitement over time?
SCRIPTURE: 1 Corinthians 1:26 – 30 Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. 27But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things - and the things that are not - to nullify the things that are, 29so that no one may boast before him. 30It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God–that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.