I love to picture eighty-five year-old Caleb speaking these words to Joshua, the prophet-leader of the Israelites, “Now therefore give me this mountain” (Joshua 14:12). Caleb had a vision of something better for himself and his family and he was faithful to that vision for forty-five years. He exhibited patient endurance as he walked with Moses, Joshua, and the children of Israel through the wilderness for forty-five years after seeing the land of Canaan, the promised land.
Early on in their exodus from Egypt, Caleb was sent with eleven men to see the land of Canaan. They brought back grapes, pomegranates, and figs and reported that “surely it floweth with milk and honey” (Numbers 13:27). “Nevertheless,” ten other spies cautioned, “the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities are walled, and very great” (Numbers 13:28). As the Israelites began to get nervous, “Caleb stilled the people before Moses, and said, Let us go up at once, and possess it; for we are well able to overcome it” (Numbers 13:30). When the people murmured, Joshua and Caleb encouraged the Israelites saying, “The land, which we passed through to search it, is an exceedingly good land. If the Lord delight in us, then he will bring us into this land, and give it us: a land which floweth with milk and honey. Only rebel not ye against the Lord, neither fear ye the people of the land; for they are bread for us: their defence is departed from them, and the Lord is with us: fear them not” (Numbers 14:7-9). But the people doubted. They were afraid. They turned away from the Lord and His promised land and promised blessings.
Caleb and Joshua did not doubt. And so, the Lord promised that they would be the only two over the age of twenty who would enter the promised land (see Numbers 14:29-30). In fact, the Lord promised to give Caleb “the land that he hath trodden upon, and to his children, because he hath wholly followed the Lord” (Deuteronomy 1:36). So Caleb patiently walked and climbed, trusting in the Lord’s promise of something better.
It was with eagerness and confidence that Caleb asked Joshua for this promised blessing as they entered the promised land: “Now therefore give me this mountain.” Even though he was now eighty-five years old, Caleb was “as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me” (Joshua 14:11) because of his confidence in the Lord. The cities were still walled and great and the people were large and mighty, but Caleb knew he could conquer them and receive his mountain because “the Lord will be with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the Lord said” (Joshua 14:12).
The Lord will be with us as we climb our mountains and strive for our goals. He will help us drive out the giants in our lives and break down the walls before us. He has something better for each of us, a life of opportunity and abundance, if we will just seek for it and ask for it. Caleb saw a vision of a better land and life, asked for his mountain, and then fought with all his might and strength confident in the Lord’s ability to help him receive his desires. And the Lord gave Caleb his mountain.
I recently attended a seminar where I was invited to aspire higher and play big. I have been amazed at the vision of better things I can do and receive that has come to me over the last two months. Things I have thought about doing for years are now becoming a reality with a clear vision and purpose. I have an expanded vision of how I want the relationships in my life to be and how I can achieve them. I am a little tentative to approach these walls and hug these giants on my mountain, but I am so excited to get past them and climb to the top of this mountain because I know the view will be worth it. I have done hard things before and getting to the mountaintop has always been better than staying where I was.
Have you been in this place in your life long enough? Are you ready for something more, something better? After more than forty years in the wilderness, the Lord spoke to the children of Israel, “saying, Ye have dwelt long enough in this mount: Turn you, and take your journey, and go to the mount” (Deuteronomy 1:6-7). Your promised land is waiting for you. Your mountain is ready to climb. There are boulders and walls and giants to get past as you journey higher to something better, but God will be with you and will give you success. “The Lord God of your fathers make you a thousand times so many more as ye are, and bless you, as he hath promised you” (Deuteronomy 1:11).
I know that God loves me and He loves you. He wants to give each of us all that He has. The children of Israel learned that God “gave them their own desire” (Psalm 78:29) and sadly they “turned back” from God and “limited the Holy One of Israel” (Psalm 78:41) in His ability to bless them a thousand times more. What do you desire most? There is a mountain waiting for you. God will give it to you if you just ask Him for it. He will help you climb it. What are you waiting for? Let’s start climbing today.
(To expand your vision of who you are and how God can make you a thousand times more than you are now, start your journey up the mountain with Vision Climb 1.)