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The Grasshopper Mindset

Now Caleb calmed the people before Moses and said, “We must go up and take possession of it, because we are more than able to do it.” But the men who went up with him said, “We can’t go up against the people because they are stronger than we.” … We saw ourselves as grasshoppers, and that’s how we appeared to them.” Numbers 13:30-31, 33 CEB

In this story in Number chapter 13, Moses sends a contingent of 12 men to explore the land of Canaan, the land that God had promised the Hebrew people they would possess. Ten of the men came back with a horrifying report. “The people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. The land we explored will devour us. All the people we saw were like giants. We seemed like grasshoppers in our eyes and in theirs.”

Yet two of the men, Joshua and Caleb, came back with a different report. “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it.” Makes you wonder if they visited the same land. How could ten men see a land of giants, while two of God’s faithful saw something different? Unfortunately, the Hebrew people were more swayed by the terrifying report of the ten and refused to go any further into the land that God had promised them.

They had a grasshopper mentality. The obstacles they faced seemed like giants to them, insurmountable and frightening. How often in our own lives do we look at our obstacles or challenges and they seem like “giants” to us. In comparison we seem like grasshoppers. A grasshopper mentality looks at limitations, weaknesses, and failings in such a way that one is trapped, terrified to make a move.

Yet how often in our lives, those giants of obstacles are in reality “grasshoppers” when we look at them through the eyes of God who gives us hope and strength in our times of need.

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