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Wednesday, July 2, 2008

There we saw the giants. (Numbers 13:33)

"There we saw the giants." (Numbers 13:33)

As the children of God approached the promise land, they sent out spies to check out their new home. And what they found were giants.

Since about August of last year, it seems that giants in the promise land of my life have stalked me relentlessly. Probably more than not, I have run and fled in the face of such monsters. I took on the role of one of the "spies" who said things like, "We can't attack...they are stronger than we are." (v. 31)

I wish I were more like Caleb and Joshua who saw God instead of giants. "We should go up and take possession....for we can certainly do it." (v. 30). "Do not be afraid....because we will swallow them up" (Num. 14:9).

The Israelites faced giants as they were moving forward in serving God and following Him. When they turned back to the wilderness, they found no giants. This is an interesting point.

If I am to move forward, giants will come and block my path. Unless I overcome in faith, my life will be consumed by the giants I face. However, if we stay and fight, we will always emerge victorious through the strength of Jesus Christ.

Paul said it quite well: "We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body" (2 Cor. 4:8-10).

I think I fail to experience this divine principle because I expect it all without a struggle. I surrender to the giants. Or expect them to step aside without a fight. Nothing worth having is easily gained. There is no such thing as "generic brand" fruit for the Christian.

The cost of our redemption was everything God had to give. It did not come cheap or easy. Difficult times--the giants of our lives--are the schools of faith and character. They are the marketplace of redemption.

Matthew Henry said, "We can depend on God to fulfill His promise, even when all the roads leading to it are closed. 'For no matter how many promises God has made, they are "Yes" in Christ. And so through Him the "Amen" [so be it] is spoken by us to the glory of God' [2 Cor. 1:20]."

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