Look How You See: You
October 9, 2007 ē By Pastor Keith McCullough
Numbers 13:26-33 - In our scriptures we have the very familiar account of the Israelites on the brink of the Promised Land sending spies into the land to check it out. For those who may not be familiar let me take a brief moment to set the stage for were we are at this moment. At this point they are camped in the southwest section, just south of the
Mediterranean Sea. God has instructed them to send in spies to see if it is as good as promised. They were also to see how the people lived whether in the open, in tents, or fortified cities. The questions becomes why in the world would God have to commission people to go before the rest to prove the word of God. Letís not forget who Moses is dealing with, he is dealing with the children of and the mixed multitude. Within each group Iím sure there were believers and consumers. To use a more relevant example, what we have here is a group of Christians and a group of church folk. You see Christians hear the word of God, believe and change their lives to be in line with the word. Church folks hear the word of God, know their lives donít line up but refuse to change. Like Moses most pastors have to deal with a group made up of mostly church folks and a minority of true Christians. Israel
They told Moses and the others, yes the land is flowing with milk and honey, "nevertheless, the peopleÖ". They began to focus on the physical attributes of the people currently in the land. However, the real giants werenít in the land they were in their minds. Caleb comes in and basically says I donít know what we are waiting for, letís do this. The same question applies to you, what are you waiting for? Why are you delaying in going after what God has said is yours? Could it be youíre afraid of the work involved with going after your promise?
Every time a Christian speaks up; church folk want to have the last word. We canít go up against those people; they are stronger than we are. We canít evangelize the community; we have to get ourselves together first. That would be all well and fine if you were really trying to get yourself together. Most people who make that statement are more interested in staying in the safety of a comfortable environment. But if you want to receive the blessings of God; sometimes you need to move out of your comfort zone and allow God to stretch you. Are you a Christian or church folk? Letís look quickly at some indicators in these scriptures.
Indicator #1; who are you going to believe God or your lying eyes? Church folk will always believe their lying eyes. Church folk will focus on the giants and the walls and forget about the promise. In track and field there is an event called the hurdles. The key to being successful is proper steps between the hurdles, leaping just enough to clear the hurdles, and focusing on the finish line. Hurdlers donít focus on the hurdles they need to overcome they focus on the tape. They know that hurdles are coming but because their steps are ordered, they know when they have to elevate to get over the hurdles. Unlike church-folk, Christians have their steps ordered by the word of God so they don't worry about the hurdles or the obstacles in their lives. Because their steps are ordered they know that when an obstacle comes, they will be given enough lift to overcome it. Christians focus on end and depend on properly ordered steps to navigate the journey.
Indicator #2, church folks will place more authority on their opinions or beliefs than on the word of God. God said he was going to give the land to the children of
but the ten came back and said it couldnít be done. They totally discounted the word and power of God. Right now there are playoff games being played in major league baseball. One of the match ups is between the Cleveland Indians and the New York Yankees. During the regular season the Yankees had beaten the Indians all six times that they met. They interviewed one of the Indiansí players and asked him about the Yankeeís dominance over them during the regular season. The player responded that the playoffs are different from the regular season. With the playoffs comes a new environment and in that new environment you have to go to another level to accomplish your goal. Christians understand that being under Christ is different than a life outside of Christ. They understand that in Christ they are a new creation and because of this they have to renew their mind and not follow the things of old. Many church folk canít and wonít cross over because they wonít take their walk to the next level, they wonít operate in the new environment created by Christ. In Christ, Christians know that they can do all things through Christ that strengthens them. Israel
Indicator #3, church folks will compare themselves to others. The ten focused on how they saw themselves in comparison to the people in the Promised Land. And while it is true we have to be careful how we see ourselves that was not the core of their problem. The core of the problem was not the fact that they saw themselves as inadequate; it was not the fact that they saw themselves as mere grasshoppers and saw the inhabitants as giants. The core of their problem was they were looking at themselves. God has given each of us a divine design and has set us here for a purpose. We waste time comparing ourselves to other people or other ministries. Christians realize that you can only compare yourself to the person God wants you to be.
God is looking to fulfill his promise in your life; you just need to line up with his word. Donít allow whatever is holding you back to continue to dominate your life. Today is the day you need to lay it aside. Donít focus on the giants or walls; focus on the word. You have to make up in your mind that you are sick and tired of being sick and tired and force with the help of the Holy Spirit a change in your thinking. If you change your thinking, youíll change your situation. But you must realize that you are going to have to work at it. God has given you everything that you need to go after your promise, strap up and go get it.