Based on a message spoken at Wave Sisters by Ps Sharon Kelly February 7, 2018
Blog by Sandy Hopkins
I’ve been focusing on the 12 spies that were sent out to explore the land of Canaan in my Bible reading recently and gosh I have been so challenged! The 12 spies – one from every tribe, were hand-chosen for this task. These men were picked as leaders to represent their tribe – selected above thousands of other men to speak on behalf of their people. Ambassadors if you will, amongst the finest in their tribe, to bring back a description and opinion on Canaan – the land God declared He was giving the Israelites in Numbers 13:2.
“Send some men to explore the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites. From each ancestral tribe send one of its leaders.”
God was giving them this land – yet 10 out of the 12 chosen leaders came back saying it was not possible! You and I are in a position to read the end of the story and know that they were successful in entering the land God promised to them, but I wonder if they ever had a revelation that their thinking and confession kept them out of that promised land? AND I wonder to myself how many times I’ve brought a negative report – even if only in my own thinking. I know I’ve been guilty of thinking “I can’t do that” when God has whispered a promise to me about my future. I think every one of us has been there at some point in their thinking, but how do I choose to be the kind of leader that always sees the silver lining, the possibilities, the glass always half full?
Here are some thoughts I believe are key;
Don’t look back
Life is here, so live it now. Don’t reminisce about “the good old days” or long for a life that’s comfortable or easy. If you’re a leader, you are out in front leading the way – a trailblazer isn’t following someone. They do however, have mentors and people they look up to and draw encouragement from. They have also learned (and are still learning) the practice of knowing their self worth from God and encouraging themselves from God’s Word.
Be prepared to pay the price
I remember hearing evangelist Reinhard Bonnke speak a few years ago and I began to contemplate what his daily life might look like. This great man of God lives, eats and breathes Jesus – whether preaching on stage or meeting one on one, he is passionate about seeing people won for Christ. Working as a world renowned evangelist wasn’t a job that “fell into his lap”. There would have been many times he had to choose this pathway at a high cost. Whether seen or unseen there is a price to be paid for following Christ – but it is far outweighed by the benefits.
See the possibilities
When you find yourself in a stressful and difficult situation – what is your first thought or action? I personally often feel my neck and shoulders tensing, my brow becoming furrowed or the smile disappearing from my face. If you and I are going to be people who choose to see the silver lining and lead people into this victorious and abundant life in Christ, we need to retrain our eyes to see the possibilities, not the obstacles or problems. I remember having a boss who instead of asking his employees to deal with an issue, would say instead “I have an opportunity to overcome for you”.
Life is a series of possibilities and opportunities if you choose to see it that way. The best way I know to retrain my thinking is to keep God’s Word in my heart and on my lips, keep my relationship with God alive and fresh, plus being planted in a great church.
Lord I pray that as people who love you, we choose to keep moving forward and also have eyes to see and ears to hear the possibilities and opportunities that are set before us. AMEN