From The Great God of Gideon series. (This is a long one, but so worth it!)
It might be helpful to read Judges 6:1-15 (click here) before you go on.
The angel of the Lord has come to Gideon -- who is hiding, afraid and alone --and has met him with a declaration that Gideon is a “mighty warrior” and that “The Lord is with [him].” (Judges 6:12 NIV) Gideon protests and asking if God is with us, why are things so bad? Why are there people oppressing us and winning? But we don't find the messenger engaging with Gideon in any such discussion. Instead he says:
“… go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian’s hand. Am I not sending you?” (Judges 6:14 NIV)
God calls Gideon to action. Remember, He has called Gideon a mighty warrior. He has declared that God is with him. Now God tells Gideon that He is sending him to save Israel from its enemies.
Again, Gideon protests:
“But Lord,’ Gideon asked, “how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.” (Judges 6:15 NIV)
Again Gideon is resisting the declaration that he is a mighty warrior… He offers evidence that he is definitely not a mighty warrior. He is from the weakest people in his tribe and if that were not enough, he is the least among his family members. I wonder what he felt like growing up. I imagine he has felt these labels on him a long time.
What labels do we have on us? Maybe since we were very young?
Silly. Insignificant. Stupid. Worthless. Invisible.
Gideon believes he is weak, the least of the people, and so he has no faith that he can do what God is calling him to do.
But I ask you, would God call us to do something He would not empower us to do? Does that make any sense?
What had the Lord said again? He began the call with the answer to Gideon’s protests. “Go in the strength YOU HAVE…” (Judges 6:14 NIV)
And to emphasize that God is confident He has not chosen the wrong guy, He follows it up with “AM I NOT SENDING YOU?” (Judges 6:14 NIV)
God is well aware of Gideon’s strengths and weaknesses. He knows each of us better than we know ourselves. He isn’t asking Gideon to be his big brother or the guy down the street. He is asking Gideon to go be Gideon. Strengths, weaknesses…everything. Go as you. Go be yourself. Go in the strength YOU have. I am sending YOU. On purpose. God is choosing and sending Gideon.
So often we disqualify ourselves for what God has called us to do. At the root is a misunderstanding of God’s character. We argue with God just like Gideon. But the truth is:
We don’t have to make ourselves into something we are not. God never works through deception or hypocrisy – only through authenticity, honesty and wholeheartedness!
God is sending Gideon to save his people.
Will Gideon go?
And if he does, will God be faithful to work through him… despite his weaknesses?
Tune in next time!
But what about us?
What is God sending us to do? Will we trust He knows what He is doing… and respond?
Jeri writes about her spiritual journey as she lives out her everyday life.