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Mailbox Truth

Read: Numbers 13:1-3; Numbers 13:23-33


The other day when I brought in the mail, there it was. Tucked in with the other envelopes, there was a lesson waiting to be discovered. It came in the form of a useless offer. It was an offer addressed to my husband. What was being held out to him?

Car insurance. Now I know that these things are sent out in mass mailings; however there are two things this insurance company didn't know. First, my husband went to heaven in January, and second, he never did have a car during our 43 years of marriage. With those things in mind, I disregarded the offer and pitched it into the trash. Oh, but there is a lesson here I need to remember even when I'm not "filing" the mail.


There are many thoughts that come into my mind that need to be as quickly abandoned as that come-on was. Thoughts that are no longer true about me. Thoughts that describe the person I used to be before Jesus made me new and brought me into His family, 1 John 3:1; 2 Corinthians 5:17. Thoughts about God that are different than what is said in His Word. Thoughts that stand in opposition to the truths in the Bible.

Ideas we are to oppose and stand against with God's truth, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5. Each of these thoughts and many others like them is as worthless as that car insurance offer. There is no reason to entertain them; in fact, doing so can keep us from the blessings the Lord wants to give us if we don't exchange useless and even harmless speculations for His perspectives. Before looking at an example from Numbers, I must say how imperfectly I sometimes disregard worthless thoughts. Growth has happened because of the Lord's work in my life, 2 Corinthians 3:18, and I'm very thankful for the prompting and the strength the Holy Spirit gives me. With that said, let's see the mailbox lesson walked out by the children of Israel.


In Numbers 13:1-3, we see God's directive. Moses was to choose one leader from each of the tribes. Their mission, and yes, they did choose to accept it, was to look over the land that God was giving them, Numbers 13:2. This mission, according to God's directive was not to learn whether or not conquering the land was possible. They were simply to go and come back with a report concerning the produce, cities and people of the land. God was the giver of the gift, and whether or not He would give it to them was not in question. They did their jobs and returned back to the camp where the people were waiting.


That was when the warfare truly began. The produce was indeed beautiful according to their words. In fact, they even brought back a visual aid. A huge cluster of grapes. They should have stopped there, but sadly, they didn't. Rather than holding out the truth that God had given them, they looked at the obstacles they had seen. Enemies that they told the people were unbeatable. They disregarded what God had said and trusted in their own assessments and feelings, and it all began with the word "however" that is found in Numbers 13:28. That was when the camp was struck with lying words. Words that contradicted God's Word.


Enter Caleb. He tried to tear up that false report by speaking truth. In Numbers 13:30, Caleb laid it on the line. They could surely do what God had promised, but sadly, the other ten men who had accompanied Caleb and Joshua, continued to speak lies. Their words were taken in by the children of Israel, and because they did not believe what God had said, that generation forfeited the blessing that could have been theirs. If only they had abandoned the words that stood in opposition to what God had said. Most of the time, our times of struggling concerning walking according to God's perspective rather than man's aren't as life changing as the decision made by the children of Israel. Even so, choosing what God says is true over and over truly changes our lives.


For example, what if we believed that we are valuable in the sight of God on one of those days that we feel less than valuable in the eyes of a loved one? Think of it. Colossians 3:12 reminds us that we are chosen, holy and loved; so, we are free to pitch any other assessments in the trash. What the Creator/Redeemer says trumps the opinions of people, and believing it changes us bit by bit.


Lord, help us to toss out of our thinking the worthless words that oppose what You say is true. Instead, help us to choose to shape our lives according to what You have said.

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