Enlarge the Place of Your Tent

By Pastor Teck Uy

We all desire to advance and progress. If there is anything that will hold us back, it is fear—the fear to fail. Because progress demands change, many do not want to plunge themselves into the unknown because of possible failure. They would rather stay in their comfort zones and debase. The Israelites were not an exception to this way of thinking; hence, they were told: “Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes” (Isa. 54:2). Change requires hard work. Even the apparent simple task of enlarging the place of our tent requires that we clear both the old site and the new site to make room for the new tent.

While there is much work involved in enlarging our tents, it is often the fear of failure that will stop us from pursuing it. We fear what men may say if we ever fail. This fear incapacitates us and makes us dormant. But the Israelites were told, “Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth” (Isa. 54:4). If we receive the command to enlarge from the Lord, he will surely equip us and allow us to finish it. In the end, whatever we will accomplish is for his glory. Therefore, we should not hold back, but take that bold step of enlarging our tents.

Our spiritual family is going through the process of enlarging its tent. While we found our old site comfortable, it was not enough to accommodate all of us. The need for more rooms prompted us to plunge ourselves into the building project. It has not been an easy task, but we did not hold back and we will continue to persevere until we will finally move into the new tent. Meantime, enlarging our tent required us to dismantle the old one. After having stayed there for more than a decade, it was not easy to see what we built and treasured go in an instant. There were emotions involved and tears were shed. Besides, it also required hard work. This experience gave us a better understanding of what the Israelites experienced when they were wandering in the desert. Being led by the Shekina glory cloud, “whenever the cloud lifted from above the Tent, the Israelites set out; wherever the cloud settled, the Israelites encamped” (Numbers 9:17). They were always on the move and had to uproot whatever they had erected as they moved from place to place. Had they chosen to stay where they pitched their tents because it was comfortable for them, they would not have reached the Promised Land.

In our own personal life, we also need to enlarge our visions. Many do not progress either in their physical or spiritual life because they refuse to go beyond their comfort zones. They are satisfied where they are and do not want to make any moves that entail some changes in their set routines. They would rather stay in their small corner than take that step of faith of enlarging their reach. They fear what men may say should they ever fail. As far as their spiritual walk is concerned, they should take note of the Apostle Paul’s stand. He said, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile” (Rom. 1:16). We all need to boldly live out our faith and take steps to reach out to others. We should not be cowed by the prospect of being put to shame because of our faith in the Lord. Jesus warned, “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels” (Luke 9:26).

Likewise, we should also take that bold step of progressing in our career and family. We should not settle for the second best. There is always a better future for those who will not hold back but are willing to enlarge their tents. Progress will entail changes and could be costly, but the payback will be great. It is worth taking the step of faith, for the Lord will surely be true to his promise. Not only did he promise to never leave us nor forsake us, but said, “Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated”. This being the case, let us enlarge our tent and do not hold back. Our success is for the glory of God. Hallelujah!