It was my day to sleep in, and it was obvious that sleep wasn’t going to happen.
4am had come and gone. Then 5am, 6am, and finally at 6:20 I told the hubs I was getting up. My thoughts had been swirling for over 2 hours. I’d sufficiently worried about kids and grands, and I’d planned my week, strategized a couple of projects, and even fought off some voices telling me what I couldn’t do with a dream in my heart.
It was time for coffee. Little did I know God was waiting for me.
Sometimes I am thoroughly convinced I haven’t a clue how big and loving God is. As I snuggled into the chair with my bible, journal, and coffee, He wrapped Himself around me in a hug that felt like a brand new plush bathrobe.
I didn’t know what I was going to read, I just needed to settle my mind in some good, solid truth. My reality needed a reality check. I am mid-way through making one dream a reality, and embarking on a second. The first has opened my heart to dream again, and the second is stretching it even more.
As I opened my bible I noticed one of the pages had folded over. Turning to that page to flatten it out my breath caught for a moment as I read a note I’d written in the margin a couple years ago. The chapters on that page were Numbers 13 and 14.
Here’s the context:
Moses was leading the nation of Israel out of slavery into the land that God had prepared and promised them. An 11-day journey took 40 years. This was in the middle of that 40 years. 12 spies had just returned from scoping out this new land. God had told them it would be flowing with milk and honey, and true enough, it was. It was also inhabited by a couple of nations that hated the Israelites and one particular nation of giants.
As the spies began recounting what they had seen, it becomes apparent that not all 12 of them had the same perspective. Ten of the spies were looking more closely at their enemies than they were at God. The fact of the matter is that whatever we focus on impresses us the most. These 10 spies were looking at their enemies and allowing their minds and hearts to be so impressed by them that they forgot who (and Who’s) they were. They became fearful of what they saw rather than trusting in the faithfulness of the One who had just rescued them out of Egypt.
Sometimes we look at the promises of God and focus more on our own abilities. We forget what He is able to do. The Israelites were looking at the giants and forgetting that God had already promised them the land. When God promises us something, He delivers it.
At this point it was a good thing that I’d finished my coffee. I realized that it was no accident that particular page had folded over. It was no accident that I’d studied this passage earlier and made some notes in the margin. In the margin I read:
Over each one of us is a promise of God. It is a Kingdom dream. Don’t get to the edge of your dream and stop. Don’t let the obstacles and challenges hold you back. It is through the challenges and obstacles that God works things into and out of me as I overcome the obstacles. Do not let fear be an obstacle. If God has promised it, it will happen. Focus on the possibilities in Christ instead of the obstacles.
This part is foundational: If God has promised it, it will happen. I had to go back to Him and make sure I was still on the right track with a couple of my “Kingdom dreams”. Then I listed out my enemies and put them in their place. God promised the nation of Israel this land. It didn’t matter that people were there. All that mattered was that God had promised, and He never goes back on His word.
If God has promised it, it will happen.
Some of the promises of God can be challenging to believe. Our circumstances can muck up our vision for the good things He has coming for us. Our past can convince us of all the reasons we shouldn’t trust Him. This is where the rubber meets the road. Are we going to let a couple of giants block our way into our dream, or are we going to dare to believe the One who goes before us in victory?
From Daring to Believe, embracing the promises of God by Anne B Say. Publishing date early 2017