If you’ve ever been through premarital counseling or taken a class on relationships, it’s likely you learned some rules for successful communication. A subset of these instructions is a handful of principles to keep in mind during conflict. One of the guidelines for resolving conflict in a healthy manner is to avoid overgeneralizing.
Why is it crucial to refrain from making sweeping generalizations? Well, it’s not likely your husband never pays attention to you or that your wife always interrupts you. We are cautioned against using these kinds of words because they inaccurately portray the situation and unfairly caricaturize the other party.
Sweeping generalizations aren’t always incorrect, though. In fact, some of the most encouraging generalizations are found in the Bible and reference the nature and character of God. One such statement is found in Joshua 21:45 which says, “Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.”
Not one word. We often use similar expressions to criticize or attack, putting our own personal spin on the truth. In this case, though, the statement is unequivocally correct. The author thought long and hard about it and came to the accurate conclusion that God had indeed fulfilled His promises to Israel – every last word.
The God who was in the business of faithfulness in Joshua’s lifetime is the same God we trust in today. Because He kept His promises then, we can trust Him to keep them now.
Contemplating God’s pattern of past faithfulness should bolster our faith in the present and quiet our concerns for the future. In other words, because of His established character, we can confidently declare, “Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord has made to His people will fail; all will come to pass.”
There won’t be a single word of a single one of God’s promise that He will ever leave unfulfilled.
And that’s not an overstatement.