I hurt for the thirty-six Israelite families who lost a loved one in the battle of Ai. I mourn for those who suffered greatly at the hand of a foe. I also understand the seriousness of sin and how easily we get caught up in our flesh. Achan's sin cost people their lives and hurt the fame of God in Canaan. He saw some things in Jericho that seemed valuable, and he took them. It seems like a harmless act with no real repercussions. We think the same thing! If I say these words or if I treat this person inappropriately, there will be no real consequences. It is a moment and then it is gone. God, however, sees it from a completely different perspective. He gives a clear command, like leave all the spoil in Jericho or be kind to one another, and He expects His people to live in obedience to that plan. When they do not, God has to respond to our disobedience as any loving father would. He disciplines us which, at times, impacts more than just me. As our loving Father, God cannot allow us to get away with sin, because He knows that will only feed the desire for more and eventually create an addiction or a bad habit. Joshua listened to God's voice and rid the camp of sin. I suspect it was difficult, but they knew this was their only hope for the future.

Help me, Lord, to turn my back on sin as I walk closely with You. Help me to remove all sin that is in my camp (personally, at home, or at church) so that You can do Your perfect work in me.