The Importance Of Perspective

Numbers 13 explains how Moses sent 12 spies into the Promised Land to report what the land, people and produce was like. 10 come back and tell the Israelites that there is no way they can take the land because the people are huge, very numerous and have fortified cities. Only Joshua and Caleb bring back a different report and say that it can be done. However, the Israelites side with the bad report and they rebel against Moses and God leading to 40 years of desert wandering (Numbers 14).

All the spies explored the same land but it was their perspective that differed. The 10 spies looked through human eyes and were overcome by their own inadequacy. The starting point for Caleb and Joshua was that God Almighty was with them; the God who had taken them out of Egypt, across the Red Sea and fed them in the desert. As a result they said: ‘…their protection is gone [the people in the Promised Land], but the Lord is with us. Do not be afraid of them (Numbers 14:9).’

I find this story very challenging because I know my default position is to be pessimist not an optimist. I must constantly remind myself of who God is and all he has done. This enables me to lift my perspective on situations from what I can do, to what God can do. There are several ways to do this including by spending time in the Word, hearing testimonies, praising God and praying.

The power of praising God has particularly stood out to me as I have looked at Joshua in the Bible. In the end Joshua does lead the Israelities into the Promised Land; the 10 spies were right that without God the people were too strong for them. However it wasn’t about them but about the Lord. God tells Joshua to send the worship team in front of his army and then it was God who brought down the walls of Jericho allowing them to take the city (Joshua 6).

So if you are facing something tough today, remember that nothing is impossible for God (Matthew 19:26, Mark 10:27). There is great power when you choose to praise him, the joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10).

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