New Horizons, New Insight
By Rev Yina Chow
September 4, 2022
As the wheel of time turns, do you feel like you have suddenly landed in brand new horizons? Do you see any new mission opportunities in the new horizons and construct new models for evangelism? Or do you just see a future journey studded with obstacles and difficulties? It is true that without the readiness of “a new heart,” the new horizons will be like new wine in old wineskins with a rigid structure that is unable to contain anything new. It will have no room for the Spirit’s new inspirations, methods or guidance. Before entering the Promised Land, the Israelites had wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. Despite experiencing the miracle of the Red Sea and the provision of manna, they were unable to get rid of their old life. They still retain the slave mentality developed over 400 years of slavery in Egypt. They even demanded to go back to the land of slavery to fulfill their yearning for food rather than starting their new journey in the land flowing with milk and honey. Indeed, the first most important awakening of a new heart is letting go of the stubbornness and obsession of the old self (Ezekiel 36:26). Holding on to the past and refusing to step out of your comfort zone will make you miss out on the new work God is unfolding. But if we can experience the renewal of the Spirit, we will be able to enter the new horizons with new insight, however difficult the environment.
Faced with the challenges of the new horizons, the ten men sent to explore Canaan only saw a difficult environment and their own limitations: fortified cities and their being like grasshoppers (Numbers 13:28, 33). Their negative judgment was borne out of fear and they chose not to enter Canaan. On the other hand, the other two men, Joshua and Caleb, saw the promises of God: The land was exceedingly good, flowing with milk and honey (14: 7-8). So they boldly proclaimed: “We should go up and take possession of the land, for we can certainly do it” (13:30). The same journey was met with two entirely different responses. Why? The difference in the faith of the two groups of men lies in the key word “see.” While the 10 spies saw God and themselves on the basis of a dangerous environment, the other two saw the environment based on the mighty power of God, His presence and promises. Joshua and Caleb looked beyond all the difficulties and were able to time and again experience God’s new grace and new deeds! Dear brothers and sisters, what is the basis of your judgment of the new horizons you are now in? Caleb chose to “follow God wholeheartedly.” This phrase literally means “to fill, to follow fully,” meaning to wholly follow God. Finally, at age 85, he saw the promise of God come true: “The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly” (Joshua 14:9).
Right now, whom are you following? And how does he influence your entering into the new horizons? As far as you are concerned today, which piece of land does God lead you to step onto? What mission has God entrusted you with? Are you prepared to enter God’s new horizons with new insight so you can see His promise realized and glorify His great name? “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland” (Isaiah 43:19).