Saturday, April 2, 2016

Gideon and the Kindness of God

The kindness of God astounds me. 

The story of Gideon includes a moment when God spoke to him with such sweetness that I'm blown away again by how gentle God can be with us. (Judges 7:9-15)

You probably remember that Gideon was so fearful of the Midianites that he beat out his wheat inside a wine press so they wouldn't see him. Despite his fear, God called Gideon to lead an army of 300 men into battle against an enormous Midianite army (an numerous as locusts) with nothing more than trumpets, clay pitchers, and flaming torches.

Needless to say, Gideon was afraid. I would've been, too.

The night that Gideon trimmed his army down to 300 men, God spoke to Gideon. "I've given the Midianite camp into your hands already. Go down against it."

Here's where the sweetness of God comes into play. It's breathtaking to me.

"But if you are afraid to go down, go with Purah your servant down to the camp, 
and you will hear what they say; 
and afterward your hands will be strengthened that you may go down against the camp." Judges 7:10-11 nasb

God had asked Gideon to trust Him with a battle that, without God's intervention, would mean certain death for him and all his men. There was not a sword between them. Their only defense was Almighty God.

He was all the defense they needed, but they weren't experienced enough to know it yet.

God knew the limitation of their faith. He knew their fear, and He did a kind and beautiful thing. 

He sent Gideon, along with his servant Purah, to the camp to eavesdrop. What the two men heard shocked them. A Midianite man related a dream and his friend interpreted it. "God has given Midian and all the camp into the hand of Gideon."

Those words strengthened Gideon. He and his paltry crew went out against the Midianite army and God intervened. The Midianite soldiers ran. Gideon had a tremendous victory.

Our God knows us.

He knows our strengths and weaknesses. He knows our fear and He knows when we obey despite that fear.

His lovingkindness is so great that He created a divine appointment for Gideon and the man with the dream. With a few sentences, He wiped away Gideon's fear and replaced it with the certainty of God's provision.

No matter what we face, God is with us. He knows us. He helps us to obey and, at just the right time, He sends us the encouragement we need.

We can trust Him.

Today, let's trust and obey without hesitation, knowing that the kindness of God will be sufficient to carry us through whatever He has asked us to do.
In case you missed it, here are links to: The 7:14 prayers and The Left Hander, The Fat Man, and the Woman in the Tent.

#Warrior #faith #GideonandthekindnessofGod #linesfromleanna