«Enlarge the place of your tent, and let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings; do not spare; lengthen your cords and strengthen your stakes» (Isaiah 54:2).
One time our youth group went camping. It was a small campground and we set up the tents according to the narrow space we had been assigned, so the guy lines were anchored quite close to the tents. We were already imagining what things would be like in these cramped quarters when we were given the happy news that we had pitched more tents than we actually needed. We quickly took them down, and now we had plenty of room to stretch out the guy lines and move around comfortably. So we lengthened the cords and strengthened our stakes!
The following story helped me understand this Bible verse even better. One day a man cheerily set out to fish. The weather was perfect. He got in his boat, began to row, and then put out his anchor not far from the shore. He prepared the fishing line, the bait, and before starting he prayed he would have a great day of fishing. Then he got to work
A few yards away, another man was watching him. He saw that when the fisherman caught his first fish, he measured it and said «This one is six inches long! and he put it in his bucket. A few minutes later, he caught another small fish and put it in his bucket as well.
Then the observer noted that the following fish was quite large, more than three times as large as those he had caught before. To his surprise, he heard the fisherman say «This one is too big, » and he threw it back into the water.
This happened several times, and the observer couldn’t figure it out so he decided to ask «I see you have been catching a lot of fish, but when you catch nice big fish you keep throwing them back in the water. Why don ‘t you keep the big ones and throw back the small ones?»
The fisherman answered “The big fish won’t fit in my frying pan at home; it’s only seven inches wide.”
Many times we cramp ourselves into a small area of influence or we tolerate discomfort, when we don’t really need to have those limitations.
How big is your tent site? How wide is your frying pan?
«It is a part of God’s plan to grant us, in answer to the prayer of faith, that which He would not bestow did we not thus ask» (The Great Controversy, ch. 32, p. 525).