Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How do you feel?

During the Exodus, Moses sent 12 men to spy out the Promised Land before they went in to take possession of it.  These men were well-respected leaders of their tribes of tens of thousands of people.  But how many of these men can you name?  Even if you are familiar with the story, I bet you can't name more than two.  Why do we remember Joshua  and draw a blank on Shammua, Shaphat, and Igal?  Why do we name our sons Caleb and not Palti, Gaddi, or Nahbi?  We only remember the two men who trusted God. Only two men believed that God would do what he promised.  Only two men trusted in what they could not see.  Ten men trusted in their own strength instead of in God.  Ten men are forgotten.
When the spies went into the land, they found that it was exactly the way God had described it--flowing with milk and honey (and very large grapes apparently).  But in spite of its beauty and God's promise, 10 men shrank back.  Their fear kept them from obeying God and taking possession of the land.  God had told them they were his special possession.  God had promised to go with them.  He told them not to be afraid because he would fight for them.  And their response was,
"We can't attack those people.  They are bigger than we are!"
Did they forget the plagues?  Did they forget the angel of death that passed over them?  Leaving Egypt?  Crossing the Red Sea?  Eating manna????  They had seen God's mighty power  and yet when they compared themselves with the people living in the land, they felt like grasshoppers.  Because they "felt" like grasshoppers, they became like grasshoppers--insignificant, small, forgettable.
You are what God says you are--worthy, loved, valuable, precious--not what you feel like.  So be strong and courageous.  Do not tremble or be discouraged!  And if God tells you to do something, don't talk yourself out of it.
Don't live by your feelings.  Live by faith!

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