In Numbers 14:6-9, Joshua and Caleb gave this positive report to Moses, Aaron and the children of Israel following their return from scouting out the Promised Land:
And Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh, of those who had spied out the land, tore their clothes; and they spoke to all the congregation of the sons of Israel, saying, “The land which we passed through to spy out is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord is pleased with us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us—a land which flows with milk and honey. Only do not rebel against the Lord; and do not fear the people of the land, for they will be our prey. Their protection is gone from them, and the Lord is with us; do not fear them.”
The people of Israel, who had been wandering in the desert for 40 years, were fearful of their immediate future, even though they trusted in God.
In these days of global upheaval, a lot of people are scared… including many Christians. There is a tendency for believers to periodically fix their eyes on the world and its turmoil, rather than lifting their eyes upward to where our true home is, in the heavenlies. That is why I regularly need to read this verse (emphasis mine):
Brothers and sisters, join in following my example, and observe those who walk according to the pattern you have in us. For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even as I weep, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ, whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is in their shame, who have their minds on earthly things. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ. (Philippians 3:17-20 NASB)
One of the keys for the success of the national churches of the world, which are living in a fresh outpouring of the Spirit, is this: they continually give a good report on the expansion of the Kingdom of God and its incredibly bright future. It is not a statement based on exaggeration or wishful thinking, but rather on current facts and faith. Above all else, the report points to a powerful God who is on the move, rather than on human endeavors that are fraught with frailties. The “snowball effect” of growing evangelistic efforts and new converts, is rolling from country to country, with increasingly positive accounts reaching my desk weekly.
The situation reports we receive from our national church planting partners around the world are proof that we are living in days of success, opportunities, and massive growth within the Body of Christ in the regions where Empower is active. Please rejoice that our citizenship is in heaven! And that our King is on the throne!
Spiritually speaking, brothers and sisters, keep your heads held high and your minds focused on heavenly matters, as we walk through these challenging times—with all eyes on Jesus!