We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them. – Numbers 13:33
Moses sent one representatives out of each of the 12 tribes to explore the land of Canaan for forty days. They discovered a land filled with milk and honey and abundant in natural resources. They also found the land occupied by giants, descendants from Anak. Instead of remembering the promises that God and what God can do for them, they worried about the occupants of the land and ended up spreading fear about taking possession of what God has originally intended for them.
Our lives are constantly been bombarded by challenges and fear. We would rather having everything stay status quo, no sudden change in our course of life, be firmly rooted and enjoy our current position. We always believe that our current place is the best place to be. I have been working in my company for more than 15 years, and really, roots have grown and I would rather stay for as long as I can until I really feel uncomfortable. Why change, when it is so good to be here rather than having to face with possible emotional distress, hardship and unknown giants that we may face?
The Israelites were God’s chosen people. They were heirs of God’s great resources. Yet living as slaves under the Egyptians for 400 years has conditioned them to think that working under another master would give them all the security, food and comfort they needed. They have become too ‘comfortable’ to move, forfeited what God had originally planned and stored for them. They believed the ‘old days‘ were better, which were not that old actually. Their memories were short, if they had remembered farther back to Eden. 400 years of slavery is better than heirs and co-heirs to God’s vast resources. Leave the hardship to someone else. And poofs, there goes the opportunity.
Someone mentioned to me that, without God, we could not. But without us, He would not. Yes, things will stay status quo alright missed out the great Canaan.
There are definitely challenges, but often they are overblown. The Israelites saw a great land abundant in natural resources. They have a great leader Moses. And they have a God who led them through the desert. They have crossed the Red Sea, unscathed. Their pursuers perished while pursuing them. And the probable 2 million Israelites were given free manna to eat during the whole exodus. And rather than remembering what they have, they focused on what they will face. They overblown the whole situation, and created rumors instilling fear among themselves. They have made themselves to be grasshoppers to the Amalekites. Imagine, thousands of times the different when the Amalekites were just a tad taller and bigger.
I believe it is a natural response with all of us. My kids were scared of small flying insects thousands of times her size. Adults too. But, is it natural?
Perhaps they should not have surveyed the land, and just go in and conquered it. Yes, it is true and I believe many of us can attest to bypassing this psychological distress of knowing. But that’s not how God work. He wants us to know everything and get ourselves prepared. Above all, He wants us to see how He conquer it. In other word, we are merely our own helpers to His work if we are sensitive enough to reflect all that we have gone through previously.
It is natural to be fearful. But God call us to be faithful. Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. Hebrews 11 has great accounts of what faith means to those who lived in the days of old. And they all passed their journeys. Shouldn’t we too?
It is easy to focus on the challenges and put on more fear. But it is better to focus on Jesus, put on more faith.
How then can we not think about ‘a land filled with giants‘? Personally, I don’t encourage thinking about ‘a land filled with milk and honey‘. It does help, but it won’t help to address the fear. I would rather think about a land filled by God’s promises. His promises are always good, never bad, no matter what circumstances we are in. The greatest promise that God has made to all of us is Jesus.
Jesus is a greater and a better version of Moses. He is our helper, our advocate and solicitor, our protector, the great teacher, a leader who would lead us back to the promised land. He is our ever present help in time of need. It might be a roller coaster ride. Getting in for the first time may be scary. But it’ll be fun. It will be trilling. When we disembark, we will be fully satisfied and eager for another ride.
Perhaps, just perhaps it’s time to buckle up, sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.