I’ve been going through some old stuff of mine recently, sorting and trying to decide what I actually need or want to keep, and what is junk that’s just been following me around for years. As the years have gone by, I’ve just accumulated more and more boxes of stuff, many of which I don’t really even know what’s inside them.
What I found over the weekend, though, was some old notebooks and things like that. One of which was a collection of little notes that friends had written to me when my family moved from Launceston to Hobart back in 1998. Then, it was a really long way away, it’s funny how perspectives change.
As I was reading through these notes, though, I found myself wondering about the people. Some of them were friends who I’d been right through school with, since grade 2 when we moved to Launceston. Others had joined the class along the road, and then others were people who I only met when I started at Launceston College that year. These were the people who I wondered most about. They were in my life for such a small portion of time that some of them I don’t even remember.
One person, though, I did remember. I looked them up on Facebook and after taking a bit of a gamble, actually found them. There was a bit of head scratching at first but we found familiar memories after a couple of emails, and one email was one that said I was one of this person’s first friends at the college.
It got me thinking. Here I have a snapshot – an almost infinitesimal speck of memory of some people who were obviously important enough in my life twelve years ago for me to want to remember them; and now here I am again all those years later, wondering who they were. For one person, a nice little friendship blossomed fairly quickly; and even though we only knew each other at the time for a couple of months, there was obviously enough impact on one another’s lives to remember aspects of each other.
Don’t ever underestimate the impact you might make on someone’s life. You might only meet them for a moment, but that moment might change them forever.
See, now we’re well and truly into the interesting bits of Numbers. Funnily enough this seems to be where I’m starting to forget to do this every night. Which is surprising because I actually quite like this chapter.
So Moses picks out twelve people – one from each tribe – to go and explore the promised land. Here’s a group of leaders, ready to go and have a look around and bring back a report to say what’s been happening, what’s going on, what the place is like, how strong it is, all these sorts of things.
Away they go, they find a bunch of grapes so heavy that two of them are carrying it on a pole between them; along with pomegranates and figs.
The place is obviously quite amazing. As they return there’s comments about it flowing with milk and honey, we’ve got these great looking fruits that they’ve brought back, the place is just fantastic. So of course, Moses gets all excited! Here’s the promised land, the land God said he was going to give to his people, and it looks beyond their wildest imaginings.
But of course, what happens? Instead of looking at the great big grapes (I picture grapes the size of canteloupes) and stuff like that, most of these guys come back with reports of the people living there, who are giants and powerful. There’s all these other people there: the Amalekites; Jebusites, Hittites, Amorites and Canaanites.
I want to be Caleb in my life.
Then Caleb silenced the people before Moses and said, “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” ~ Numbers 13:30
What belief, faith and confidence. Assuredness speaks for much, especially when going into battle. If you watch sport, then you’ll have probably witnessed what happens when a player or team’s confidence is down. They end up making mistakes they wouldn’t normally make, they don’t try as hard, it’s hard to actually get out of the rut. When a team or player is confident, though, then everything just seems to keep going right for them. They make the difficult shots, they hit the hard balls, it’s amazing how confidence just escalates our game to another level still.
It all comes down to what we focus on, though. We can, in our own lives, focus on the Anakites, these giants who are so much bigger than us, that make us look like little grasshoppers. Or, we can focus on God, and the confidence and assuredness that comes from knowing that he is on our side – and that’s when confidence grows.