Do you want to know how to approach new endeavors by faith?
How do we react when God shows us a new territory He wants to give us? How do we react when He presents us with a possibility of the enlargement of our ministries, business, or with a new assignment, and a new mission?
We have two options: to react in fear, mistrust, and disbelief, or to react by showing faith and choosing to follow Him.
We can learn several valuable lessons on how to approach new endeavors by faith from the Israelites and their exploration of Canaan in Numbers chapters 13 and 14.
Exploration – the First Step in Approaching New Endeavors by Faith
In Numbers chapter 13, God commands that 12 men (leaders from each tribe) go to explore the land of Canaan, which God is giving to the Israelites.
What was the aim of the exploration? The aim for the Israelites was to see with their own eyes, to get acquainted, and to get a foretaste of what God was giving them. The exploration was the first step in the preparation for action–to go forward and step into the reality of God’s promise.
This principle is valid for us too. Often, before we take action, God wants us to explore and take a good look at the specific promises and callings He wants to start us on. He wants us to gain understanding and insight. His most important is to be brave and taste and see some of the good fruit of the new things He has prepared for us.
The spies brought back from Canaan “a branch bearing a single cluster of grapes. Two of them carried it on a pole between them, along with some pomegranates and figs.” (Numbers 13:23)
This abundant fruit was a testimony and kind of teaser for all the goodness and prosperity God wanted to bestow upon them.God wants us to explore the specific promises and callings He wants to start us on so we can gain understanding and taste some of the good He has prepared for us. #Biblestudy #encouragement #bgbg2 Click To Tweet
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Two Ways to Approach New Endeavors by Faith
The spies came back with the fruit, but interestingly, they gave two different reports.
All spies saw the same thing – a beautiful and rich land, full of fruits, a land of honey and milk, with fortified cities and powerful people. (Numbers 13:27-29)
But 10 of the spies excluded God from the picture and said, “No, we can’t”. They showed an attitude, which excluded God’s involvement and participation. They saw the situation with their natural, fleshy eyes from the perspective of their limited resources and capabilities. This led to fear and disbelief, which perverted their perspective. (Numbers 13:31-32)
Only 2 of the spies believed God was bigger than the challenges and the obstacles in this land. They also believed in His promise to give them the land. So they said, “We can; let’s go.”
This was an attitude of faith expressed in a readiness to step in, and in full confidence in God’s intervention. The good report of the two spies is a wonderful example of how to approach new endeavors by faith.
Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” (Numbers 12:30)We can have an attitude of faith expressed in a readiness to step in when we believe God is bigger than our challenges and obstacles. #Biblestudy #encouragement #trustGod Click To Tweet
The Negative Results of the Disbelief in Our Hearts
When we choose to approach new endeavors, especially such initiated by God, in disbelief and fear, this may lead to extremely negative results.
Fear may lead to rebelling against God, grumbling, complete loss of faith, and total misinterpretation of God’s character, integrity, and goals.
Most importantly, such a reaction leads to moving backward instead of forward.
We see this clearly in this biblical account of the exploration of Canaan.
All the Israelites grumbled against Moses and Aaron, and the whole assembly said to them, “If only we had died in Egypt! Or in this wilderness! Why is the Lord bringing us to this land only to let us fall by the sword? Our wives and children will be taken as plunder. Wouldn’t it be better for us to go back to Egypt?” (Numbers 14:2-3)
The Negative Consequences of the Disbelief in the Relationship with God
As we can imagine, the reaction of disbelief and fear of the Israelites who believed the bad report of the spies, displeased and offended God greatly. He defined this kind of attitude as treating Him with contempt and mistrust.
The Lord said to Moses, “How long will these people treat me with contempt? How long will they refuse to believe in me, in spite of all the signs I have performed among them? (Numbers 14:11)
Upon Moses’s intercession, God forgave the Israelites. However, He also disciplined them and let them experience the bad fruit of their disbelief and disobedience.
First, they lost His blessing and found death instead of life – God didn’t allow this generation to enter the Promised Land. All people above 20 years old would find their death in the desert. (Numbers 14:29-30)
Second, they lost God’s favor. They would experience what it is like to have God against them, not for them.
“For forty years—one year for each of the forty days you explored the land—you will suffer for your sins and know what it is like to have me against you.” (Numbers 14:34)
The Attitude of Faith and God’s Reward
It is so easy to get scared when we see the challenges before us. New things are always scary. If we compare our limited resources to what God is calling us to do, it is natural to feel fear and be reluctant to make the step.
But we should never forget that with God, we can. We need to take courage and make the first step in the unknown.
Let’s follow the good example and courageous attitude of Caleb and Joshua, who focused on God and His faithfulness and power to fulfill His promises.
“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 14:8-9)
God honored and rewarded this faith and obedience by letting Joshua and Caleb enter and take possession of Canaan.
May God bless us with greater faith today and enable us to follow Him faithfully in new areas of growth.
A Helpful Resource to Renew Your Courage and Strength
Check out this devotional to help you find new courage and strength in different challenging life situations, containing devotions, focusing on 7 major areas of life, selected scripture, and scripture-based prayer after each devotion.
More Encouragement for You
If you need more resources and encouragement to help you approach new endeavors by faith, I highly recommend these books. Check them out.
Forward: Discovering God’s Presence and Purpose in Your Tomorrow by David Jeremiah
Reasonable Faith: Christian Truth and Apologetics by William Lane Craig
Trusting God in All the Things: 90 Devotions for Finding Peace in Your Every Day by Karen Ehman and Ruth Schwenk
Make Up Your Mind: Unlock Your Thoughts, Transform Your Life by Denise Dubois Pass and Michelle Nietert
Transforming Your Thought Life by Sarah Geringer
Knowing God by J.I. Packer
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What is the new land God is inviting you to enter? What step of faith can you make today to approach by faith this new endeavor? If you found this post helpful, please comment and share it on social media. Thanks!
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