SERVING THE LORD AS FAMILIES
“Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the flood, and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD. And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:14, 15
Joshua gathered the people together just before his death for some final words of advice and warning. He rehearsed to the Israelites how the Lord had called and led this people, eventually bringing them back into Canaan. He then challenged them to fear the Lord and serve Him, while turning away from the gods of the world. This man of God who had so faithfully served his people called them to make a decision on that day, whether to serve God or serve idols.
“Choose you this day whom ye will serve.” This is a choice every person needs to make. It is a real friend who encourages us to serve the Lord and live our lives for Him. We are all going to serve someone. We will either serve the Lord by living for Him and obeying His Word, or we will serve the devil by living for self and following the idols of this world. Make that your choice for today, every day, and forever. Joshua then gave us his own words of resolve, saying “but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua had lived for God as few others, faithfully serving the Lord. But in his final days, he also expressed his intention that his family serve the Lord.
The decision to live for God is an individual decision. We cannot make that choice for any other person, including the people that are the closest to us, the members of our family. However, though we cannot decide for them, we certainly want to influence them to choose Christ as Savior and give their lives to serving Him.
Every family is in need of consistent godly leadership. Too many people neglect the importance of serving the Lord as families. Having homes that are simply religious or have a form of godliness will not suffice. Children need to see that their parents love the Lord and serve Him sincerely. Families especially need to see husbands and fathers who can say, “but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”