As I have spent time this week preparing for my 2nd of 3 consecutive Women’s Conferences, which I am speaking at, I was struck by some lessons to be learned from Gideon.

Last week, I shared the 4 steps to regret free living, but the question that I posed, was: Have you ever laughed at God?  Not in the, “oh God you’re so funny,” hahaha way.  But more in the, ‘I can’t believe you asked me to do that way. I think you asked the wrong person. Do you even know who am I am God?’

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As I was reading Judges 6-8 and the life of Gideon, I was struck by this little tidbit hidden in the commentary section.  It was in reference to the excuses Gideon was making instead of believing God and His promises.  In the NIV Life Application Study Bible it said:

“Like Gideon, we are called to serve God in specific ways.  Although God promises the tools and strength we need, we often make excuses.  But reminding God of our limitations only implies that He does no know all about us or that He has made a mistake in evaluating our character.  Don’t spend time making excuse. Instead spend it doing what God wants.” [1]

As you read the story of Gideon, in Judges 6: 1-17 God is giving Gideon his marching orders.  The task is specific: Save Israel from the Midianites.  God promises to be with Gideon, and He also promises to give Gideon the needed strength to overcome the opposition.

Hey, it’s a win – win for Gideon.  I mean, if God calls him to it, He will surely see Him through it.  Right?

Well, in my mind and maybe in yours too, it’s the way we see it … that is, until we are standing in the same place as Gideon and then it’s “US” that God is giving a specific task to do. Then, it’s not so easy.  Right?

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As I read the commentary notes, I was struck by how my laughing at God, reminding Him of my shortcomings, and even questioning God in disbelief is really an excuse.  Ouch!

Judges 6:12-18

12 When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.”

13 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all his wonders that our ancestors told us about when they said, ‘Did not the Lord bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the Lord has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.”

14 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?”

15 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”

16 The Lord answered, “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites, leaving none alive.”

17 Gideon replied, “If now I have found favor in your eyes, give me a sign that it is really you talking to me. 18 Please do not go away until I come back and bring my offering and set it before you.”

And the Lord said, “I will wait until you return.”

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When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he called Gideon by a title, a name that was who he would become!

Basically, the angel of the Lord was calling out Gideon’s destiny long before he was even told what his task would be.

Gideon, didn’t even address the mighty warrior portion.  Nope, he skipped right over that portion and went straight to the woe is me mode, and his feelings of the moment.

I am all alone, all these things are happening and I don’t see God anywhere, let alone with me.  Sometimes, I too am like Gideon, and I can get caught up in my feelings and the woe is me mode.  Do you ever do that?

When we get focused on our situation and circumstances, we often miss the very encouragement and heart of God for us.

When the angel shows up, he speaks Gideon’s destiny!

He calls out the answer to all Gideon’s and the Israelite’s feelings and presenting problems.

Gideon couldn’t see anything other than his own limitations and weaknesses.

When God shows up on the scene and calls out my destiny, I don’t want to see my limitations and weaknesses. I don’t want to make excuses.  I want to hold on to the promises and believe.

In the beginning Gideon failed to see and therefore failed to believe that God could work through him to save the people.  God had a purpose for Gideon

God has given each of us a purpose.  The gifts and talents He has bestowed upon us, are so that we can serve Him and the body of Christ.

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You see, God makes beautiful things out of us, and our shortcomings.  He provides the tools we need for each task He has called us to. When he calls out my destiny, I want to grab a hold of it. I want to obediently move forward, in His power and His strength.

No More Excuses!  Are you with me?

How are you called to specifically serve God?

What name is God calling you today?

Has He called you by a name that you don’t recognize?  If so please feel free to share with us, so we can agree with who He is calling you to be.

[1] NIV Life Application Study Bible  Page 389 verses 6:14-16 commentary section

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