In the animated movie “A Bug’s Life”, Hopper is the leader of a band of grasshoppers bent on terrorizing all of the smaller insects. It’s funny how a grasshopper can be a symbol of utter intimidation, if you’re an ant.
The men who went with Caleb to explore Canaan likened themselves to grasshoppers to express their weakness compared to the natives.
But the men who had gone up with (Caleb) said, “We can’t attack those people; they are stronger than we are.” And they spread among the Israelites a bad report about the land they had explored. They said, “The land we explored devours those living in it. All the people we saw there are of great size. We saw the Nephilim there. We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes and we looked the same to them. Numbers 13:31-33
In a sense, it all depends on your perspective. If you are an ant, a grasshopper is a grave threat. But if you are a person, then a grasshopper is harmless.
This logic breaks down when you consider Caleb’s reaction. There is no evidence that he was any bigger than the rest of the Israelites. And yet he showed no fear of confronting the Nephilim. He tells Moses, “We should go up and take possession of the land for we can certainly do it.” Caleb understood that it was less important who he was than whose he was. He did not trust in his own strength, but he trusted God. As the story goes on, Caleb receives great reward. While the rest of the men who went with him die in the desert, God grants Caleb the privilege of entering the Promised Land.
Isaiah gives us the same advice,
Stop trusting in man, who has but a breath in his nostrils. Of what account is he? – Isa 2:22
Lord, I confess that too often I tremble in the face of threats. You are greater than all of my problems and you are on my side. Give me the strength, like Caleb, to fearlessly march forward to your glory. Amen.