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Friday, June 8, 2007

Be Faithful

How would you like to arrive at the twilight of your lifetime and God says, “you have followed me fully, now I am going to bless you.” I know that is my desire. Today we live in the age of “instant,” instant food, instant communication, even instant gratifications. There was nothing instant in God’s blessings towards people in the bible. The Israelites knew they were promised the Promised Land but there was nothing instant in their possessing it. If there was any man in the bible who deserved instant blessings, it was Caleb.

Caleb was a man who stood for courage, truth, and faithfulness. Moses sent out a group (24 men) to spy the Promise Land. Then they returned to report back to Moses:

"But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it. Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are.” Numbers 13:30-31
Caleb and Joshua were the only people who believed they could take possession of the land, even though everyone KNEW God’s promise to them. When Moses reminded the grumbling Israelites of God’s promise they wanted to kill Caleb

"Then all the congregation said to stone them with stones." Numbers 14:10
God was so angry at the men who gave Moses a bad report, they were killed. Only Joshua and Caleb remained among the original spies.

The circumstances around Caleb looked grim, the majority was against him. If he looked to the people around him he would have failed. Instead Caleb stood for truth; he relied on God’s promises, despite what his physical eyes saw around him. And even though he was blameless Caleb still had to wander in the wilderness for 40 years. He never blamed God, but just waited patiently for God’s promise to enter the Promise Land.

"But my servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit and has followed me fully, I will bring into the land into which he went, and his descendants shall possess it." Numbers 14:24

Caleb’s faithfulness did not go unnoticed. After they arrived and Joshua led them in their battles, the Lord blessed Caleb with Hebron, which became a city of refuge and is the place where the Tomb of the Patriarchs is located. During Caleb’s lifetime, it was a place of rest from any war.

You really don’t read that much about Caleb, he is a “background” figure. I want to encourage you, during your daily walk with Christ. If you feel like you are being faithful, and not being noticed. God notices. If you feel like all the hard work you do, sometimes feels like it is for nothing. God notices. If you find yourself discouraged because you are living through a “desert” because of someone else’s sin. God notices. There is nothing instant in God’s blessings, but when God blesses…it is big! Remain faithful and rely on God’s promises despite the circumstances you see around you.

I want God to be able to say, she “wholly followed the LORD, the God of Israel."

Paul says: ‘Everything that people wrote in the past was to teach us. They wrote those things so that we could have hope. That hope comes from the patience and strength that the Bible gives to us’ (Romans 15:4).

You can visit me at my personal blog: Laurel Wreath

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Blogger Denise said...

Thanks for sharing this Laurel, bless you.

June 9, 2007 at 1:16 AM  
Blogger Changed by His Love said...

I love the story of Caleb and Joshua - with all we are going through at our church, it gives me the greatest hope to know they stayed the course and were the only 2 original to see the promised land! Thanks for sharing.

June 9, 2007 at 7:46 AM  
Blogger Chris @ Come to the Table said...

This is such a good word (and teaching) that we all need to be reminded of EVERY day. "Remain faithful and rely on God's promises despite the circumstances you see around you"

June 9, 2007 at 7:55 AM  
Anonymous Lynn Donovan said...

It is the day-to-day journey and not the destination. Boy, do I need constant reminding of this fact. Thank you, Laurel.


June 9, 2007 at 11:46 AM  
Blogger Darlene said...

I was totally just thinking the same thing--that Caleb is rarely noticed. It's interesting though that you noticed, and I think that when you do follow God, people with the same passion for serving notice too. But ultimately, it's only God that we need to please. I enjoyed the reminder of the role Caleb played in all of this. Thanks.

June 9, 2007 at 4:42 PM  
Blogger Gretchen said...

Wow, Laurel, thanks for such an encouraging post. As a mother, sometimes I feel very much in the background. The fruit from how I raise my children won't be seen for quite a while, so it is by faith that I continue, and hope springs from that faith. Thanks again.

June 10, 2007 at 12:40 AM  
Blogger Christine said...

Standing for truth, alone, in the midst of others' sin...that's tough! Thanks for reminding me to persevere for the blessing, no matter how long it takes!

June 10, 2007 at 7:52 PM  
Blogger Cyndi said...

Oh, how I want to be a "Caleb." Thank you for this, Laurel. A great word today.

June 11, 2007 at 11:20 AM  

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It is good to hear from you... thank you so very much for leaving a note on the table. That makes us smile!

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