Jim Langley: Taking the High Ground | Homes & Lifestyle


As we mature, some of us are willing to take on challenges that many would not even consider. You may feel that those few who do so are foolish, but I’ve come to consider taking the high ground as a unique opportunity and a great honor.

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Even though I’m not nearly as strong as I was in my earlier years, God has allowed me to endure through much adversity, and I’m confident He may well continue to use me for many years to come.

One of my most cherished characters in the Old Testament is Caleb, son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite. Caleb is best known as the other spy who came back with a positive report on the territory God promised to His people. He was of course joined by Joshua, son of Nun, who later led the Israelites across the Jordan into their future homeland.

Caleb was 85 when Joshua cast lots for distribution of the inheritance for the 9½ tribes who would settle west of the Jordan River. Caleb had to wait 45 years for the promise Moses made to him after returning from their spying expedition with that optimistic report.

He was looking forward to finally taking the high ground, the hill country populated by the Anakim, the ancestors of Goliath. The Anakim were the same people who created fear in 10 of the 12 spies who brought back a negative report, thus causing the Israelites to spend nearly 40 more years in the desert.

Joshua and Caleb were the only two who trusted in the Lord to deliver them from the enemy.

As a young Army officer, I received ample training in military strategy. One of the many strategic lessons taught deals with the great value of capturing higher ground. Taking on the high ground was much more than desiring a nice view for Caleb and his clan. He obviously understood the value of that location and was up to the challenge of removing the inhabitants from the high ground of Hebron.

In Joshua 14:13, we can hear Caleb saying to Joshua, “Now give me this hill country that the Lord promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but the Lord helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.”

Abraham and Sarah are buried in Hebron. Caleb was certainly aware of the significance of this region to the Israelites and their God. And, there was certainly no need to cast lots for this high ground, since it took a special man called by God to take on the task of securing the hill country.

To those of you who claim to be followers of Christ, here’s a rhetorical question to consider: “What high ground has God presented for you to take?”

Simply pray over that question as you live daily for Christ. There’s no need to answer the question — simply dwell and ponder its implications. In fact, your words are meaningless to our Savior and Lord. What He wants and deserves is our obedience and willingness to serve Him as He sees fit. Once He prepares us for a given task, He will certainly call us for His greater purpose.

When our God confronts us with opportunities to take the high ground in any fashion, we need to seek His will, wait for His perfect timing and then obediently act to serve Him in any way we can for His glory! There’s no greater purpose in life than to be in His will!

Passages to Ponder

» Joshua 14:10-12

» Isaiah 40:3-5

» Romans 12:1-2

» Ephesians 4:11-13

» 1 Peter 1:13-16

— Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent in Santa Barbara. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his personal relationship with God, and his goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. As a longtime member of CBMC of Santa Barbara (Christian Business Men’s Connection), he started writing Fourth Quarter Strategies columns in 2014, and he now reaches an international audience through the CBMC International devotional Monday Manna. He can be contacted at [email protected] for more information. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.





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