Gideon is working in the wine press and the Angel of the Lord interrupts him.  He greets the young man with that venerable salutation which preachers have used to wax bold for centuries, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” Judges 6:12  Here’s the interesting part, Gideon comes right back, perhaps not as eloquent, but he certainly makes his point.  I’ll paraphrase: “If God is with us why are our enemies breathing down our necks?”  “And if the Lord delivered us from Egypt before, why isn’t He doing it again…now?”

Can you hear the Angel of the Lord?  “Go ahead there, G.”  “Tell us what you really think, and don’t hold anything back.”  Actually, His response left Gideon stunned.  Again, here’s my version:  “Use that passion and save your nation…GO!  I’m with you!”

Think about it.  You and I have had this same conversation with God more than once.  How many times has God “interrupted” our lives, we complain to Him, then God says, “That’s it.”  “Use that passion and go get the job done…I’m with you!”  He uses a situation to awaken our assignment, then tells us to tackle it because He is with us.  And He is.  And if we obeyed we would discover just how much “with us” He really is.

But is that what we do?  Of course not.  We do exactly what Gideon did.  We try to inform God just how small, insignificant and unqualified we are for the job.  And why do we do this?  Because we see ourselves from our own perspective rather than His.  We allow the “idols” of our past limitations and failures to define our future.  No wonder the first thing the Angel told Gideon to do was to tear down the altars of Baal.  We must also.

Here is what we need to know.  “If God be for us…who can be against us?”  It’s never about who we think we are, but about who God says we are!  There is a Champion in you just like there was in Gideon.  Trust God and dare to step out on His Word.  If you are not uncomfortable at first, you missed something.  Because it’s in that place of awkward balance and clumsy inelegance that we must really depend on Him.  And that of course is where He wants us.  God knows that  our best self appears at the point of His grace manifested in our lives.  And that is where others will see it, and greatness is born.  It is time to awaken the Gideon in you.

Pastor Ralph D. Gerard