Recently I read an article by a missionary that reminded me of the courage of Caleb in the Bible. After a rereading the Scripture passages regarding this courageous servant, I was struck by his passion to take risks even in his old age.
Not long after the Israelites had come out of Egypt, Moses asked Caleb and other Israelite operatives to go spy out the land to see what it would take to overcome the enemy and capture the land. Everyone came back with a negative report, except Caleb (Numbers 14). The spies were full of fear and were totally faithless. The fear of the spies spread to the people, they became fearful and even complained to Moses that they should have stayed in Egypt.
But Caleb, who was 40 years old at the time, was full of faith and courage. He knew God would go before them and give them victory if they would just trust God and step out by faith.
Forty-five years later, after all the other spies had died, Caleb was once again confronted with an opportunity to trust God for the impossible. He boldly declared to Joshua, “My strength now is as my strength was (back) then, now give me this mountain…the Lord will be with me, and I shall drive them out as the Lord has spoken.” (Joshua 14:12)
After reading about Caleb I have determined I want to be like Caleb. He was not only courageous, but he was willing to step out by faith and take a risks. He was not resting on past obedience and experiences, but he was just as willing to boldly step out and trust God in his old age as he was when he was a young forty years old warrior.
Can you imagine the impact that Caleb’s faith and courage had on those young Israeli soldiers? I am sure Caleb told the story of being tutored by Moses and how Moses sent him and the other men to survey the land forty-five years earlier. He must have reminded them that they will be the soldiers who chose to do what their ancestors would not do, and that is to have the courage to believe that the battle is the Lord’s. They will partner with God and witness first-hand, the miraculous power of God. Their stories of conquest will be told for centuries. What have I learned from the life of Caleb?
- Risk takers hear from God and go for it.
- Risk taking destroys all confidence in human strategy or models.
- Risk taking first involves obedience, even though the “how” is not yet visible.
- Trusting God for the impossible has no age barrier.
- God desires to use us at every stage of our life, if we will take the risk to follow His direction.
Will you be a risk-taker, stepping out in faith and be willing to obey God to make the way, even though you can’t see how it will all come together? I believe God is looking for some Caleb’s…those willing to say yes to the Lord. Would you be willing to forsake all that is safe and comfortable and follow His leading? Would you be willing to say to the Lord, “I am willing to be a Caleb, show me the way and I will go?”
“The weakness of so many modern Christians is that they feel too much at home in the world.” – A.W.Tozer