And they returned to Joshua, and said unto him, Let not all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and smite Ai; and make not all the people to labour thither; for they are but few.
My wife plays no more five rounds of golf a year, but she can hit the ball surprisingly well for so little time on the course. I try and always be positive just as a supportive husband should be. When I have ran out of the “that’s ok” and “not too bad” after a few errand shots, I throw in the “at least you advanced it” line. She usually will snap back with a dirty look and something to the effect of a sarcastic “yeah, I didn’t hit it backwards.” Our Christian lives and walk should be no different. There are periods in our lives during which we feel the struggle. However, we must have the desire to advance in our faith. We cannot allow our faith and obedience to fall backwards or regress due to situation or circumstance. In the scripture above, the spies underestimated the opponent and reported back that the full compliment of men would not be required. They reasoned there is no reason to require more work than necessary as the men of Ai were “but few.” It is easy for us not to spiritually work when we become content or when adversity seems light. We then become vulnerable and lose our edge. In 2 Corinthians 11:23, Paul talked about his necessary sacrifices for Christ suffering stints in prison and fatiguing journeys. He asked, “[a]re they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.” Paul did not regret his labors or sufferings for Christ. He counted his physical losses all as spiritual gains and all his physical setbacks as spiritual advancements. He could have been content after his conversion on the road to Damascus or maybe work a short period for the ministry in gratitude for the return of his eyesight. His salvation, however, brought about an earnest desire to do more than what seemed necessary for the time and the place. Let us have that desire to do more. I’ve never heard anyone say, “I wish I’d done less for the church and Christ!”