It is eleven days’ journey from Horeb by way of Mount Seir to Kadesh Barnea. Now it came to pass in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, that Moses spoke to the children of Israel according to all that the Lord had given him as commandments to them,
What should have been an 11 day journey to the promised land for Israel ended up taking forty years.
They sent spies into the promised land (something God never told them to do, by the way), and they were afraid of what they saw, so they refused to enter. Forty years they paid for that critical decision born of fear. Seems pretty silly for those of us with the benefit of hindsight. But for them, their fears were real and justified. There was a lot that could go wrong, dispossessing giants of their land. So they rejected the promise of God and succumbed to their fear, a mistake that cost them forty years of wandering.
Today, you and I stand on the edge of a promised land as well. We have been promised by God a power to change the world. We have been promised a kingdom of righteousness that will never end. But, like Israel, we have dipped our toe in the water and found it difficult and scary. We fear fighting the giants of our own sin and selfishness. We fear fighting the giant of an established church system built on the works of man. We fear the giant of the unknown, where we may have to suffer lack and hardship and hunger for the cross of Christ.
And, like Israel, that fear will keep us paralyzed, unable to enter the victory God has for us.
The choice is yours…the choice is mine. Fear or faith? Resistance or victory. Possess the promised land or wander the wilderness? There is no middle ground.