Friday, April 9, 2010

Grasshopper syndrome


Numbers 13:33 We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them."


Numbers 13:33-14:4. The negative opinion of 10 men caused a great rebellion among the people. Because it is human nature to accept opinion as fact, we must be especially careful when voicing our negative opinions. What we say may heavily influence the actions of those who trust us to give sound advice.


You'll never know what you're made of spiritually until you come against something too big to handle alone. That's when you discover what you really believe. When Moses sent twelve scouts to check out Israel's new homeland, they all saw the same thing: a land rich in honey, milk - and giants! Yes, Joshua and Caleb saw them too. Faith isn't ignoring the obvious, that's denial.

Acknowledging a problem isn't an expression of doubt. And it's not a sin. Paul said, "We would have come unto you… but Satan hindered us" (1 Thessalonians 2:18). You can't overcome what you won't acknowledge. The difference between the scouts was in how they saw the problem. Ten said, "We saw the giants… and we were in our own eyes as grasshoppers," but Joshua and Caleb said, "Do not fear the people of the land. For they are but bread for us to eat! The Lord is with us" (Numbers 14:9 TLB).

Real faith feeds off the stuff the enemy throws at you. It says, "Bring it on! The Lord is with me. He has robbed the enemy of his power to hurt me."

The negative report of the ten spies caused three reactions in the people.

(1) Fear. Fear is irrational. It can make you forget every good thing God's promised, or done for you.
(2) Some wanted to go back to Egypt - back to how things used to be. Hello!
(3) Others wanted to settle in the wilderness. You've got to move with the cloud, otherwise today's manna is the last you'll see.

When you come up against a giant, either your faith will cause you to soar or your fear will cause you to sink. The Israelites died 21 miles from the Promised Land, going in circles. Why? "We saw the giants… and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers." If you're to see (and seize) what God's promised you, you'll have to conquer your giants. Now, you have the power to, but do you have the will to? Joshua and Caleb stood alone. Faith will place you in the minority! "The whole congregation… said… would to God that we had died… in the land of Egypt" (Exodus 16:2-3). In order to go where God wants to take you, you'll have to rise above the opinions of others.

So, who are these good people with grasshopper mentalities?

(1) They constantly talk about life's injustices, about how they've been mistreated and misunderstood. To them Paul answers, "Endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ" (2 Timothy 2:3).
(2) They make excuses for not conquering in life. Sometimes they even put others down because they're walking in victory. To them Paul writes, "In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us" (Romans 8:37 NIV).
(3) They complain about what they don't have instead of focusing on what they do. To them Peter writes, "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness" (2 Peter 1:3 NIV).


"Lord, please forgive me for the times that I have not made progress in my walk with you because of "fear" brought on by the grasshopper syndrome. I need to remind myself through the Word, that I am more than a conqueror and that the battle is not mine, but it is yours! I will step out by faith today, and attempt to see things like you see them. In Jesus name, amen!"