And as they journeyed, a terror from God fell upon the cities that were around them, so that they did not pursue the sons of Jacob.
Too often we make decisions about what to do based on what makes sense to us. Too often, we fail to remember that our command to reach the world with the Gospel of Christ has been given to us by the God who is over all the earth. Too often we fail to remember that the Holy Spirit of God is with us. Too often, we fail to grasp that God has the power to do what we think impossible. Too often, we fail to see that God doing the impossible glorifies him and gives us joy.
When Jacob traveled in Canaan with his people, his sons did some things that made them not the most beloved group in the land. Jacob feared that the Canaanite people would come and fight against him and his family. In fact, all logic pointed in this direction. Levi and Simeon had wiped out an entire village [and nobody is arguing that this was the right thing to do]. It only made sense that Jacob’s days were numbered.
But God was involved in his people’s lives. God was keeping his promises to Jacob, to Isaac, and to Abraham. God used his power, his amazing, unseen, invisible power, to make things happen that Jacob did not imagine.
God, by his own power and for his own glory, made fear of Jacob fall upon the people of the land. While it seems that the Canaanites would have assembled and destroyed a similar band to the family of Jacob, God moved. Behind the scenes, out of human sight, God made it so that the enemies never mustered the courage to attack. The men who might have spoken to raise a mob never spoke. The tough guys who might have picked up the spears never quite managed to get their hands to move. God acted, and Jacob remained safe.
What about us? What might God do for us if we would simply be bold enough to follow him? Do you want to move to a foreign country for missions but fear you lack the funds? Why not trust God? Do you want to share the gospel with your neighbor but are afraid that she won’t hear you? Why not pray and give it a shot? God is with us. God is real. God is strong. God changes lives. God changes circumstances that we cannot see. Why not trust him and step out in faith? Why not ask him to do what is otherwise impossible if he does not do it?