“On that day the Lord exalted Joshua in the sight of all Israel, and they stood in awe of him just as they had stood in awe of Moses, all the days of his life.” (Joshua 4:14)
Moses was “the servant of the Lord,” and Joshua was at Moses’ right hand. It had always been that way, as far as the current generation could remember. But the Lord Himself saw to it that Joshua could step out of Moses’ shadow.
When the people of Israel left Egypt under Moses’ leadership, God made a path for them right through the Red Sea. He thus showed His power, but also confirmed Moses’ leadership.
Now that they were about to enter the land of Canaan under Joshua’s leadership, He made a path for them right through the river Jordan. At Joshua’s command, the priests walked into the water with the ark of the Lord, and the waters rose up in a heap. All the people were able to cross safely on dry ground. As soon as the priests climbed up the river bank, the water resumed its course. This miracle was a sign that “the living God” was in their midst (see Joshua 3:9-10). But this miracle also confirmed Joshua’s position as a leader. From then on, the people respected Joshua just as they had Moses.
Do you sometimes think that you are in someone’s shadow? How does that affect you? Or conversely, do you (unconsciously) stunt the growth of other people? How can you change that?