Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Get Your Feet Wet

For the last five weeks, I've been enjoying a Priscilla Shirer Bible study called One in a Million. It's about what God taught the Israelites during their time in the wilderness, and how He moved them into the Promised Land. I've learned many exciting truths over the last few weeks, and tonight I just feel compelled to share how God has been speaking to me.

Nevertheless People
When the Israelites reached the edge of the Promised Land (Canaan), Moses sent out 12 spies to see what the land was like and what kind of people lived there (Numbers 13).  Upon their return, all 12 spies reported that the land was flowing with milk and honey, just as God had promised. As evidence, they brought back a single cluster of grapes so big that two men had to carry it on a pole between them.

But 10 of the spies tacked something on the end of that initial report. "Nevertheless," they said, "The people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large.... All the people we saw there are of great size.... We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them."

So they saw the cluster, the sure sign of God's blessing, and their answer was, "Nevertheless."

What about the other two spies, Joshua and Caleb? "The LORD is with us," they said. "Do not be afraid of them."

But the Israelites listened to the report of the 10 spies. They saw the promise, but refused to believe. The result was 40 years of wandering for that entire generation. Out of about 2 million people, only Joshua and Caleb got to enter the Promised Land. (Each of them was "One in a Million.") Not even Moses got to enter, although God did allow him to view Canaan from a mountain on the other side of the Jordan River.

Priscilla urged us to consider the new territory God wants to take us to. She suggested that we make a "cluster keeper," a journal or some other record of the clusters of blessings God has already given us. When we feel afraid, when we feel tempted to say "Nevertheless," we should focus on our personal proofs of God's goodness and faithfulness. God has selected US to break through the barriers, to break out of our religious complacency and go where He leads us.

Wet Feet
After Moses saw the Promised Land, he died and Joshua became the new leader. The Israelites mourned for 30 days, and then they moved forward under Joshua's leadership (Deuteronomy 34).

  • Joshua acted immediately in obedience to God. He didn't linger or procrastinate. "Early in the morning, Joshua and all the Israelites set out from Shittim and went to the Jordan, where they camped before crossing over." (Joshua 3:1) They camped there for three days, getting a good look at their impossible circumstance; it was April, and the river was swollen with melted snow from the mountain.
  • Joshua acted fearlessly in spite of insurmountable odds. Right there on the banks of the raging river, he told the people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you." (Joshua 3:5)

    Just as God had instructed, Joshua told the priests to carry the ark of the covenant and go ahead of the people. At the beginning of the exodus, when God parted the Red Sea, the previous generation had stepped out onto dry land. But this time the priests had to step into the flood waters. They had to get their feet wet and trust that God would hold back the water as he had promised.
  • Joshua acknowledged the presence of God. He instructed the people to watch the ark of the covenant. When they saw the priests carrying it, they were to move out from their positions and follow it. (Joshua 3:3)
So what does all this mean?
  1. "The bigger your deep waters, the more enormous the opportunity for a miracle. Celebrate!"
  2. Get up early, literally and figuratively. Start your day by seeking God's direction, and make Him your first priority.
  3. As you look around at your impossible circumstance, or you contemplate the impossible task God has called you to do, anticipate miracles. Don't let Satan's stronghold of fear hold you back from pursuing God's will.
  4. Wait for God to move before you move. Just as the Israelites waited for the ark of the covenant, which represented God's presence, we must watch for God's leading. And don't be distracted by all the good things around you. "Every good thing is not a God thing." If you get too busy doing good things, you won't be able to accomplish God's purpose for you.
  5. Get your feet wet. When you see God leading you, go ahead and step out. God will hold back the waters, but you have to take that first step in faith.
As Priscilla shared all these truths, I felt a stirring in my spirit--excitement for the future and dissatisfaction with life as usual. But I can't just charge ahead. I have to know where God is leading me. I'm going to take Priscilla's advice and pray that God will heighten my spiritual senses and make me aware of His presence. I'm going to spend more time with God and find out what good things I need to pass up so that I can focus on doing only His will for me.

I fully expect to see evidence of God's leading in my life. I intend to get my feet wet as soon as He gives me the signal.


Gentle said...

I like "every good thing is not a God thing," just as every bad thing is not of evil. This is important to know and recognize.

"Get your feet wet." Instead of just waiting to hear from God, I like to jump in feet first (get my feet wet)...to have FAITH that He is ALREADY leading us. I think He wants us to act..to make a choice...to make a decision-Our Father will surely let us know, if we are listening. wrong or right...there is always purpose. Though, we have those moments that we are called to wait, to sit still, and be patient....I much rather love that I can jump in and know He is there to catch me in my failure and be proud of my successes...but always-He must be smiling on my trust that I have in Him.

I love your entry and I am excited you are learning so much.

Victor S E Moubarak said...

Brilliant post.

May God bless you and guide you.


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