Numbers 13 starts with God telling Moses to send one man from each of the ancestral tribes to explore the land of Canaan that God was giving them to be their new home. Moses of course obeyed and the 12 men went. At the end of the chapter, we learn that the land was more wonderful than they could have ever imagined. It was flowing with milk and honey. They even brought back bountiful fruit to show their friends and families but no matter how good the land was their minds were focused on the fact that the people that already dwelled in the land are strong and the cities were fortified and the Amalekites were living there. Verse 33 ends by saying “…to ourselves we seemed like grasshoppers, and we must have seemed that same to them,”
I imagine that those were the facts, they probably were small in stature compared to the people living in Canaan. It probably was an impossible situation for them to undertake on their own. And of course, we know the outcome, they never enter the land that God promised them. This is one reason I enjoy history, and especially history in the Bible, it gives us an opportunity to see things from a different perspective. We get to see how the story played out and how history unfolded for the people that have gone before us and then we get the opportunity to apply it to our own lives. So, what those men didn’t know or couldn’t see while they were exploring the land of Canaan was…
(1) God had already given the land to them. It was a promise and God is always faithful to his word. We don’t have to fight, strive, or scheme for God’s promises for our lives. We just have to do our part to live them out.
(2) God had a plan. In Joshua Chapter 2 we learn that when the Israelites finally do enter the land, under Joshua’s leadership, God had prepared unexpected allies.
(3) Miracles were going to happen to help them get there.
One of the reasons they couldn’t see any of these things was because of how they saw themselves and how they saw themselves was how they thought others (probably including God) saw them too. They saw themselves as insignificant grasshoppers, not the valued and protected sons and daughters of the most high God. Their vision of themselves got in the way of what God was going to do.
So if you happen to be up against a giant in your life or an impossible situation, I want to encourage you to take a look at how you see yourself because just like the Israelites, how you see yourself may impact your ability to see the promises of God unfold in your life.