Joshua was a Godly leader when the Israelites first crossed the Jordan and took possession of the land that God had given them. Once Joshua passed away, though, things changed.
After that whole generation had been gathered to their ancestors, another generation grew up who knew neither the LORD nor what he had done for Israel. (Judges 2:10 NIV)
We need leaders who will remind us to walk together with God. We need their example. We need their inspiration. We need to know we are not alone as we battle with the enemy and bring God into our homes, neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces. Without those Godly leaders, we can easily get lost.
Then the Israelites did evil in the eyes of the LORD and served the Baals. They forsook the LORD, the God of their ancestors, who had brought them out of Egypt. They followed and worshiped various gods of the peoples around them. (Judges 2:11-12a NIV)
In a world filled with GPS-enabled cellphones, the term “lost” has lost (see what I did there) some of its meaning. When we think of getting lost now, we think of our phones giving us an immediate solution.
They aroused the LORD's anger because they forsook him and served Baal and the Ashtoreths. In his anger against Israel the LORD gave them into the hands of raiders who plundered them. He sold them into the hands of their enemies all around, whom they were no longer able to resist. (Judges 2:12b-14 NIV)
Israel experienced what it meant to be truly “lost,” though. They stopped listening to the LORD. They stopped following the LORD. They ended up in full-fledged rebellion against the LORD. They experienced the consequences of their actions.Whenever Israel went out to fight, the hand of the LORD was against them to defeat them, just as he had sworn to them. They were in great distress. (Judges 2:15 NIV)
Godly leaders are a blessing because they help us remember true North. They remind us to pick up the compass of life to point us back to God, regardless where we have travelled. Without them, we can forget. Without them, we can get lost. Without them, we can find ourselves wandering in the wilderness completely ignoring the LORD.
How about you? Have you gotten “lost” before? Was there a lack of Godly leadership in your life at that time? Were they not there, or did you just not listen to them? Did you get back on track? Did a Godly leader help you “pick up the compass” again? Are you walking together with God?