The other day I was getting ready for work and didn’t know what shirt I was going to wear. You see, I have no problem picking out my pants or shoes. I wear jeans and boots everyday that I go to work. In fact, I wear my boots and jeans probably 350 out of 365 days of the year. I guess it is my Colorado roots living in a farming and ranching community that ties me to my desired dress code.
As I was fingering through my shirts, I came across one that had never been worn. It had the price tag on it as well as a couple of other tags for branding. I got the shirt as a gift 6-7 years ago and had never worn it. It was stuck in between other long sleeve shirts and I had forgotten it was there. I was distracted by all the other shirts in my closet and forgot the present that had been given me. Seven years forgotten. I put it on and got several compliments from those I came in contact with.
It reminds me of a story I read tucked away in the Old Testament. A little backdrop. God had freed the Israelites from the slavery of the Egyptian empire and opened the Red Sea for their escape. They were fed with manna each morning and had been walking in the wilderness for about 1 1/2 years. God was ready for them to enter the Promised land and was directing Moses as to what He wanted. “Send some men to explore the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the Israelites. From each ancestral tribe send one of its leaders.” (So the spies went out for 40 days and brought back their report). They gave Moses this account: “We went into the land to which you sent us, and it does flow with milk and honey! Here is its fruit. But the people who live there are powerful, and the cities are fortified and very large. We even saw descendants of Anak there. . . .And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak come from the Nephilim). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.”” Numbers 13:2, 27-28, 32-33 NIV
God gave them a gift. The promised land. All they had to do was take the promise and go with it. Unfortunately they allowed the distractions to fog their perspective. The people are powerful. The cities are fortified. The cities are very large. We saw Anak descendants there (giants in the land). The land devours those living there. People were of great size. We looked like grasshoppers to them.
I was distracted by all the other shirts in my closet and never fully realized my gift. I was distracted by all the other shirts that were known to me and were comfortable. The Israelites were distracted by all that was around them and never opened the Promise that God had for them.
On this journey, God has promise after promise for us to open, if only we would trust Him and obey what He wants us to do. Are there unopened gifts that God would want you to open for your journey? It’s our move.