“There we saw the giants … and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight…” (Numbers 13:33)
The book of Numbers records the death of an entire generation. Twelve spies were sent to do reconnaissance in the land of Canaan. Ten of the spies gave the “giant” report. Only two told how great the land was and exhorted the people to invade Canaan. While Joshua and Caleb were men of great faith, the other ten were experts in “Giantology.”
The entire generation who listened to the ten perished in the wilderness; only two people survived the most tragic judgment of God recorded in the Bible. An old spiritual puts it this way: “Others saw the giants. Caleb (and Joshua) saw the Lord!” We read that they wholly followed the Lord because they believed Him well able to conquer those giants.
I have spent most of my adult life as a pastor. I cannot help but allow the thought that the twelve spies resemble a board of Elders, a Session, a Vestry, or a board of Stewards. Sometimes when a church is facing a huge challenge two will have the faith of Caleb and Joshua and ten will be giantologists.
We all have “giants” in our lives. As a bedfast quadriplegic with a wife in a wheelchair I certainly have mine. I’m sure you have yours. We also have choices. We can choose to see the giants and spend much time talking about how big they are. Or we can choose to see the Lord conquering our giants. We might call this: “Two people in a pew — which one are you?”
Are you a Caleb with a conquering-the-giants faith, or are you getting your Ph.D. in Giantology?
Dick Woodward, 27 November 2013