The Lord now said to Moses, “Send out men to explore the land”… Caleb tried to quiet the people as they stood before Moses. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” he said. “We can certainly conquer it!” But the other men … disagreed. “The land we traveled through and explored will devour anyone who goes to live there. All the people we saw were huge. We even saw giants there, the descendants of Anak. Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too!”—Numbers 13:1-33, NLT
When the Israelites sent spies to explore the Promised Land, the great majority of them fell into the trap of “It Can’t Be Done.” They saw the size of the challenge, how wild the land was, the power of the inhabitants, even the stature of their competition. Only two of them—Caleb and Joshua—came back encouraged and positive in their report. “Let’s go at once to take the land,” Caleb said. “We can certainly conquer it!” That report indicates the personal confidence of those who have see the LORD Almighty and know that God goes with them.
The other side did not see the LORD in the Promised Land. They only saw giants. Imagine a world in which you could only see evil power without perceiving the goodness of God that has even more power. Those who do not see the LORD and God’s purposes in their life have less reason to feel confident in the face of their challenges, and therefore, their self-esteem remains either minimal or ill-founded. “Next to them we felt like grasshoppers, and that’s what they thought, too!” Those who walk by faith know their success does not depend on their own power, but rather on the Champion at their side.
If you feel like a grasshopper, the whole world with take you for a grasshopper. If you trust God to fight for you, others will see your confidence and perceive the power you have. That truth makes a great difference for immigrants. The level of confidence you carry determines how others will perceive you. If you believe “it can’t be done,” the whole world will agree. If you know that “Yes, we can do it,” because God can do all things, others will believe in you and open doors of opportunity for you.
Carry yourself today like those who have a Giant on their side, not like someone cowers before one.
Copyright©2013 by Joseph L. Castleberry. All Rights Reserved. email@example.com
Dr. Joseph Castleberry is president of Northwest University in Kirkland, Washington. He is the author of The New Pilgrims: How Immigrants are Renewing America’s Faith (forthcoming in August 2015, Worthy Publishing). Follow him on Twitter @DrCastleberry and at http://www.facebook.com/Joseph.Castleberry.