Joshua 1:9 (NIV)
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
I’ve written before when life changes directions rather out of the blue (click CHANGE to read it), and wouldn’t you know it, just when I wasn’t expecting it, the winds of change have once again blown my way, messing with the well-worn groves on my sameness path. What is it this time? Well, I’m making the jump from one place of worship to another, cutting the ties that bind, saying goodbye to super special people and a place of ministry that I’ve been privileged to be involved in for the past six years and it’s hard.
But let me backtrack just a bit…
A few months ago, while joining others in prayer for my nephew and niece who were being installed as pastors of a new work, God gave me a word for them. I cannot even recall what I said, which happens when you’re just the delivery voice. After praying, I felt this impression that I was to be involved here too… Just a gentle nudge, a thought, an idea that came ‘out of the blue’ and I immediately thought to myself, “what? Uh…no, I’m just feeling that way because it’s family,” or so I thought at that time. I just tucked that away for another day, not really believing what I heard, but mostly because I DON’T WANT TO CHANGE.
Fast forward to a few weeks ago, I’m having a nice weekend out of town with my hubby and we’re talking and all of a sudden the thought comes back, like strong, like you need to do this, like now! I tell my hubby and he’s said, “well if God said go, then go, I’m with ya…”
It’s time. “Have I not commanded you?”
Well, alrighty then…so I guess it’s a yes God. Yikes, did I just say that?
And with that thought He downloaded a step by step order of leaving from one “promised land” to the next. It was crazy…tell this person, then that person; call this person, meet with this person, etc., so that within 7 days almost all of the telling was done. I even had a leaving date; He was allowing me to ‘finish well.’ For that, I’m so very grateful.
A Different Spirit
There’s one thing I didn’t want to happen with this journey of mine, and that would be to act like one of the children of Israel, grumbling, falling out, wanting to go back. After all they went through leaving Egypt, they arrive at what is to be their Promised Land. The Lord tells Moses to send men to explore the land, to see all the wonders it held for them. When they returned, of the twelve men sent, only two, Caleb and Joshua saw this land with GOD EYES, with focused vision, ready to take it. The rest only saw the GIANTS.
Hear the words of the Caleb & Joshua:
“We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it…” “…The land we passed through and explored is exceedingly good. 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 14:30; 15:6-9 NIV)
The GIANTS had nothing on what God could do!!
Did they listen?
Nope. Israel was right at the brink of receiving the promise, but they drew back, blinded by their fear, and because they drew back and grumbled, they lost out. EVERYONE lost out on their promise. Not one of those living above age 20 who grumbled would see their promise fulfilled. They all paid the price with their lives. That’s when their wandering truly began…40 years worth.
“…not one of those who saw my glory and the signs I performed in Egypt and in the wilderness but who disobeyed me and tested me ten times—not one of them will ever see the land I promised on oath to their ancestors. No one who has treated me with contempt will ever see it. But because my servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it.” (Numbers 15:22-24 NIV)
I want to be a more like a Caleb, having a different spirit. Seeing with GOD EYES and not through a cloud of fear; stepping out ahead instead of drawing back in fear. I have not arrived by any stretch, but I’ll get there. I think this journey of mine was a test. Would I walk through and do it?
Changing the Word
I know my little change journey isn’t quite as drastic as the Israelites, but saying Yes to God is obedience, and obedience is the same, no matter the different scenarios.
As of this writing, I’ve reached that final day and literally heard the door close. What a great ending to a very special season. You had to be there. 🙂 Another door is now opening filled with all things new – lots of “milk and honey” will be flowing. Not sure what it looks like yet, but God does. He’ll show me the way, again, step by step.
Last thought… every Sunday at the end of service my pastor commissions us to go and “Change the World” and I intend to do just that, in my own little way.