Who? Me? Strong?
Have you been hiding? Feeling discouraged, inadequate, ill-equipped, doubtful?
It’s OK, you can be honest with me….because I’ve been there! I think sometimes we all feel that way….
I’ve been doing a Bible study about Gideon. He and his fellow Israelites had been suffering oppression from the Midianites and he wasn’t feeling particularly courageous.
His people had “gone off the rails” and were basically doing whatever they wanted to do without regard to God. It had been a long time since Joshua had led them into the Promised Land and they’d all kind of forgotten what God had done for them.
One day Gideon was doing his ordinary, daily work (threshing grain) in an out-of-the way place, feeling afraid of the Midianites and perhaps kind of like a nobody. Then, something remarkable happened!
While Gideon was doing his ordinary, mundane task of threshing wheat – “The angel of the Lord appeared to him and said
“The Lord is with you, mighty warrior!” (Judges 6:12)
Gideon didn’t even realize that it was the Lord speaking to him. I can see it now – Gideon probably took a quick look around to see if there was some other fella there who the angel was speaking to …because HE certainly wasn’t a mighty warrior! Gideon’s response was “But, sir, if the Lord is with us why has all this happened to us? Where are the wonders that we’d heard about in the past? The Lord has abandoned us!”
Then the Lord turned to him – and said
“Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?”
Now Gideon is starting to get it. I can almost see the wheels turning in his head – “Oh, wow….this isn’t just some guy telling calling me a mighty warrior and telling me the Lord is with me, it is the LORD HIMSELF telling me this in person!”
However, this realization doesn’t really change Gideon’s response much: “But, Lord….how can I save Israel? I’m the smallest, weakest nothing-est person in my family!” (my paraphrase...smile)
The Lord tells him again –
“I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites together.”
So, I’m thinking about MY life when I’m reading about Gideon. I can SO relate to him:
But, but, but……Lord!
Feeling afraid, forgotten, alone.
Feeling inadequate, ill-equipped.
Certainly not feeling “mighty”!
The really awesome thing is that God does His best work in me when I’m at my weakest. Weak - but willing to surrender to Him.
I’m not amazing in my own strength. However, when I allow GOD to be amazing through me….now that is something!
It’s all about HIS might. HIS power. HIS plan. HIS timing.
So, where are you feeling less-than-mighty today? Are you feeling like God’s abandoned you? Are you feeling like your mundane, daily, ordinary tasks don’t matter? What (or who) are you hiding from?
The first step from that place is to recognize His voice. Recognize. Listen. Trust. Follow.
Turn on your God radar and listen expectantly for His call…. for His voice to say “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior!”
P.S. I haven’t finished the Bible study yet, but I can tell you that the story ends very well for Gideon and God’s people. You can read all about it in the book of Judges.