And thus ten of the twelve spies sent out to investigate the Promised Land, instead brought fear and defeat to the Israelites. What makes you feel small in your own sight? For me it is a trail of failures from financial to moral going back to childhood. When I look at the past, my future looks like a colossal monster, which I face with extreme trepidation. A little voice inside whispers, “You’ll only fail again and bring further consequences too difficult to bear. Just stay where you are and do what you can to minimize any further damage.”
Maybe your giant is self-doubt or, like the Israelites, you worry about how others perceive you. (“…and so we were in their sight.”)
For a moment, let us be real, shall we? You are right about your doubts and so am I. I have failed miserably in my life again and again. The future is a big, nasty giant with sharp teeth and a long, long reach. Others may even think little of us or our abilities. Our task is most likely impossible. We live in a crumbling culture that vilifies Christ and deifies corruption at the highest levels. We have mortgaged our future to present pleasures, and have become a nation of idolaters.
Yes, the ten spies were indeed small in their own eyes and in the eyes of their enemies. But Joshua and Caleb knew something that the others had forgotten. They understood that God was greater than their enemy. Numbers 14:9 “Only do not rebel against the LORD, nor fear the people of the land, for they are our bread; their protection has departed from them, and the LORD is with us. Do not fear them.”
So also, God is greater than the giants that haunt us. He is greater than our obstacles and will ultimately defeat even the consequences of our failures. Sometimes this will take longer than you wish. I love the following quote from an unknown author inscribed on the memorial to the Seabees, between Memorial Bridge and Arlington Cemetery:
“The difficult we do at once; the impossible takes a bit longer.”
And so, like Caleb and Joshua did forty years later, we enter the Promised Land. And while we wait we learn to feed on His faithfulness, which really is the whole point.