Joshua 17:14-18 (JDV)
Joshua 17:14 Joseph’s descendants said to Joshua, “Why did you give us only one tribal allotment as an inheritance? We have many people, because Yahveh has been blessing us greatly.”
Joshua 17:15 “If you have so many people,” Joshua replied to them, “go to the forest and clear an area for yourselves there in the land of the Perizzites and the Rephaim, because Ephraim’s hill country is too small for you.”
Joshua 17:16 But the descendants of Joseph said, “The hill country is not enough for us, and all the Canaanites who inhabit the valley area have iron chariots, both at Beth-shean with its surrounding villages and in the Jezreel Valley.”
Joshua 17:17 So Joshua replied to Joseph’s family (that is, Ephraim and Manasseh), “You have many people and great strength. You will not have just one allotment,
Joshua 17:18 because the hill country will be yours also. It is a forest; clear it and its outlying areas will be yours. You can also drive out the Canaanites, even though they have iron chariots and are strong.”
Perhaps the descendants of Joseph were expecting Joshua to reallocate land already allotted to one of the other tribes. Joshua was not going to do that. Instead, he encouraged them to use their strength and numbers to clear the land in the hill country, and to drive out the Canaanites. He assures them that even though the Canaanites have iron chariots, God would give them the victory. But they had to make the effort.
As I read this, Jesus seems to be telling me that I need to try harder, and not just expect victory to be handed to me because I ask for it. The same God who answers prayer because of his love will sometimes say no because he wants me to keep trying, and trust that the things I need are already within my reach.
Coming King, give me the wisdom to pray hard, and to keep trying.