img_1539b

“Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered,
and Moses, Aaron, and Hur went to the top of the hill.
As long as Moses held up his hands (author’s note: Moses lifted his hands)
the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands,
the Amalekites were winning. When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone
and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so
that his hands remained steady til sunset. So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword.
Then the Lord said to Moses, ‘Write this on a scroll as something to be remembered and make sure
that Joshua hears it, because I will completely blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven.’
Moses built an altar and called it, ‘The Lord is my Banner.’
He said, ‘For hands were lifted up to the throne of the Lord.‘”

This biblical story is powerful on many, many levels. Perhaps over the next few days/week, we can rest on it, meditate on it, and apply its truths to our lives this new year. Upon first reading it, I couldn’t get passed “his hands remained steady until sunset.” Moses had commanded Joshua, his young protege, to take an army and defeat the Amalekites. Joshua, wholeheartedly obedient as always, wields his sword and defeats this ancient foe of Israel. Yes, Joshua’s success is partly due to his military prowess and ability to command an army, but the real reason defeat comes is because Moses’ is on top of a hill (consider the vantage point here . . . Moses is lifted above the battle which gives him keen insight and different perspective) lifting the staff of God’s authority. But, what arrested my attention here is that Moses got tired. His lifted hands began to fall. The battle raged on and on and on. There is no mention here of a servant bringing food or water. Did he get a bathroom break? Was there ever a moment Moses nodded off? It is not recorded, so we will have to surmise that God gave him supernatural strength. And, God gave him two mighty warriors to stand beside him—Aaron (his brother) and Hur (who scholars believe was Miriam’s husband). They didn’t hesitate when they saw Moses getting tired. They knew that Moses’ hands must remain lifted. And as they came alongside Moses, uplifting his hands for him, the Amalekites were defeated and Israel was once more safe.

Today, I ask, is there an Amalekite army on your horizon? Do you need an Aaron and a Hur to lift your hands and keep them steady until the sunset of your fierce battle against an ancient foe in your life/family/friendship/workplace/church is over? I pray that God provides them for you. Or, perhaps, YOU are the Aaron or Hur of someone’s life. Look around. Lift up your eyes to the Lord and see if he directs you to lift someone’s hands.

I know that I have needed Aaron and Hur’s these past four months, as all of my children flew away from the nest. Because of their intercession and compassion, I defeated the army of anxiety that buffeted my soul. Today, I am stronger because of them. My son, Grant, left for Transfer Orientation at Liberty University today. As I’ve written before, he decided to transfer from Gordon College (in Wenham, MA), sensing he wanted to be closer to home. I couldn’t tag along (which probably is a good thing) because tomorrow night, Brooke is passing the “crown” to a new homecoming queen at her high school alma mater. I couldn’t be two places at once (which I once thought was possible), so I hugged his neck hard and sent him off with Dad. A few teardrops fell, but nothing like August. Or mid-October. Or early November.

Lord, I pray that you would send Aaron’s and Hur’s forth today.
Send them into our lives to help our hands remain steady until sunset.
And, Lord, if we need to be an Aaron or Hur, so be it. Make us
sensitive to the leading of your Spirit. Make us wholeheartedly obedient
like Joshua. Obedient to follow your leading. And, in the end,
defeat the ancient foes of our lives. May we bring you glory. Amen.