“Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, who were among those who had explored the land, tore their clothes and said to the entire Israelite assembly, ‘The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. 8 If the Lord is pleased with us, he will lead us into that land, a land flowing with milk and honey, and will give it to us. Only do not rebel against the Lord. And do not be afraid of the people of the land, because we will devour them. Their protection is gone, but the Lord is with us. Do not be afraid of them.’” Numbers 14:6-9 (NIV)
I love watching fixer upper shows with my husband. Some people are truly talented because they take a house that is literally falling apart and transform it (with a lot of sweat equity and money) into something beautiful. Instead of spending more money on a home that is move in ready, people choose to spend less, but invest more of themselves and the result is the home of their dreams.
We had a sermon yesterday at church about the Israelites and the Promised Land. The actual sermon was about Joshua and Caleb and their correct response to the enemies in the Promised Land. It was an encouragement to remind us how God wants us to respond to the “enemies” in our life. However, that got me thinking about the Promised Land in greater detail.
God could have made the Promised Land move in ready. He could have killed off all the inhabitants of the land before the Israelites crossed over – after all, they were postponed 40 long years wandering in the same circle in the desert. Instead, God presented the Israelites with a fixer upper. Maybe, God wanted them to invest a bit of themselves in their new home, with His guidance, to make it the home of their dreams.
And, just like real life today, some people choose to skip fixer upper properties, preferring instead to move into “ready to possess” homes while other people see excitement in the adventure of taking on the challenge of creating their own space.
God didn’t expect the Israelites to go into the Promised Land without His help. Just like on the reality TV series that has Chip and Joanna taking charge of the renovation project, God is right there with us, wanting to take over, asking us only to obey. There might be quite a bit of sweat equity (sacrifice) required of us, but God sees the final outcome before He even asks us to step in and begin.
God was Someone the Israelites could trust many years ago to lead them to victory if they chose to obey and focus on Him, not their circumstances. God is the same today as He was back then. If God is leading you through your own desert to your own Promised Land, I can’t promise you that it will be a move in ready victory. More than likely, your Promised Land will be a fixer upper that will require sweat equity and sacrifice. However, if you continue to obey God and look at your circumstances through the lens of His promises, your Promised Land can also be transformed into something beautiful. The choice is yours.
Come back next time and I will share the other truth God revealed to me through the Israelites and the Promised Land.
© Cheri Swalwell 2016