I have a recliner that I love to sit in because it is comfortable – and I like being comfortable. The problem is that once I sit down in that recliner I get lazy. Productivity slows to a snail’s pace and very little is accomplished. Whenever I place the priority on comfort, my effectiveness is threatened.
In the same way, the priority of comfort can kill the effectiveness of the church. Too many people are unwilling to move outside of their comfort zones so that God can work.
In Numbers 13 we see that the nation of Israel was in a location called Kadesh Barnea. This was a place where God had given them everything they needed. As a result, they had grown comfortable. God’s plan was to take them into the Promised Land, an even greater place, so they could expand and enjoy greater blessing.
However, the Israelites were not convinced. They sent twelve spies into the Promised Land to see if conquering it was as much of a possibility as God said it was. After weighing all the evidence, they placed the priority on comfort and ultimately missed God’s blessing.
Lessons To Learn
1- God has a plan that is greater than you can imagine.
God was going to give the Israelites a land that would more than meet every need they would ever have. However, they didn’t understand the magnitude of God’s plan.
2- What God intends to be a blessing and an opportunity, many people will see as an insurmountable challenge.
The spies went into the land and verified that it was the greatest land they had ever seen. “However” (vs. 28) they began focusing on the challenges and the potential threats.
We are setting ourselves up for failure and an insignificant existence anytime our churches focus on the challenges of moving forward more than the promises and provision of God.
3- A focus on the challenge more than a focus on God can lead to loss.
Israel looked at the challenges and responded with fear and doubt. They were unwilling to leave their comfort zone. They ignored the fact that God had already guaranteed victory.
4- God will not force His plan on us.
The nation of Israel wandered in the desert for 40 years until that generation of unbelieving cowards died off.
There are too many people in churches across America who will not get out of their comfort zones and meet the challenges facing the Church. They would rather sit in their recliner, in a state of comfort, than get up and claim God’s blessings.
Our comfort zones must take a backseat to the plans of God. Until they do, our churches will be left to wander in the wilderness of idleness, never accomplishing much of anything for God.