Deuteronomy 1: 28-29
“Where can we go? Our brothers have made us lose heart. They say, ‘The people are stronger and taller than we are; the cities are large, with walls up to the sky. We even saw the Anakites there.'” Then I said to you, “Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. The LORD your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes,” NIV
So, this morning I went to the word “lose” in my NIV concordance and began searching for the phrase “lose heart” in the NIV. Here I am back in Deuteronomy with Moses and the people. Again, the story is being told of their fateful decision not to enter the promised land.
The most interesting phrase to me in these two verses is, “our brothers made us lose heart.” The Message says, “our brothers took all the wind out of our sails.”
Now, I’ve certainly felt like that. I’ve had more than a few parades rained on by folks who did not share my enthusiasm, but, can someone else actually MAKE us lose heart or worry? I don’t think so. I think that worry is a decision that we make when we are faced with evidence, any evidence, or maybe, as I think of it, perhaps no evidence at all … Worry is what happens when, among other things, we convince ourselves that the goal is beyond our grasp. Other people can contribute to our predisposition to worry. I worked for a woman once who delighted in saying and doing things that would cause me to react with worry … it was a game to her, and I was not mature enough to see it.
Look at what happened when the Israelites allowed someone else’s thoughts, perceptions and opinions to affect their courage and their actions. They had to spend 40 years wandering in the desert, and, only those who had remained faithful (just one, I think or maybe two) were permitted to enter the promised land.
I don’t want to be someone who allows someone else to “make” me worry. I want to think and act out of the assurance that the one true God, who goes before me, and beside me, and under me and over me and behind me will fight for me.
That’s what I’ll think about today.