Well, I have finally written a story about one of my favorite Bible characters. My favorite New Testament character comes up a lot in my writing. (Peter. Why, you may ask? Because he literally should put his foot in his mouth for half the things he says and does, but God uses him anyway. It gives me hope for me). My favorite Old Testament character is Joseph, but all the good songs about him have already been written and put in a musical, so...yeah.
I must admit that God's words to Gideon top any other conversation with another character in comedy and depth. If you are unfamiliar with Gideon's story, let me fill in background. If you know his story, humor me :). Gideon is one of God's chosen people, an Israelite. They are living in the land promised to them by God. But, they have decided to forsake God and worship another god, Baal. God sent the Midianites to oppress them, steal their crops, and wage war against them so His people would again call on Him. We meet Gideon in a wine press threshing wheat. Wheat should be threshed on a high hill or out in the open in a breezy location where the chaff and excess plant stuff can be blown away while the wheat falls back down. Gideon is doing this job practically in a pit (where nothing would blow away and it is practically a useless endeavor) because he doesn't want to be discovered by the Midianites and his crop seized. All of the sudden, an angel appears to Gideon and says, "The LORD is with you, mighty warrior!" Now, if you are Gideon, or me, or anyone who gets the fact that Gideon is being a straight up sissy at the moment, the angel's statement sparks a "WHA???" moment. The logical person in me argued the meaning behind this phrase. Perhaps God is just comforting Gideon and gearing him up for war. It's like one of my grade school camp kids get hurt, and while you try to bandage it up, they ask how bad it is, and you say "Oh, it's not that bad" regardless of how bad it is. Well, friends...God is not like that. What he speaks is complete truth. So, when he shows up and says Gideon is a mighty warrior, then that means Gideon is a mighty warrior. Whether he was or not before that moment is debatable, but from that time on, he is. And, it is his true identity and purpose. God can do that. He can show up in the midst of our lives and speak truth over us. And where there was once nothing, there is something. This same God spoke into the void and POW!!! - creation. He speaks into us and POW! goodness, creativity, kindness, strength, etc. come to life.
This is why I love the story of Gideon. We can trust what God has spoken over us - some of it is for all believers in Scripture. Sometimes what he speaks is more personal - to individual hearts. But, he speaks who we truly are to all of us. That is why I love the story of Gideon.
I did leave out a bit of it :). Like the fleece and the aftermath, but the good parts are there, of course!
Down in the dust that’s where I was
Down there, starving for air and a purpose
Listening close, for sounds of the foe
When without warning, there stood before me a presence unknown, and He said,
“The LORD is with you; You are a mighty warrior and I am sending you”
“Pardon me, sir, I’d tend to disagree, sir
With what you’ve said, can’t you see we’re oppressed, down here in a hole?
And why me, sir? For I am the least of
All of my people; They’ll need more of a leader to win a war”
“The LORD is with you; You are a mighty warrior and I am sending you
Out of nothing, I speak to life all that is meant to be: Oh how brave you’ll…”
“The LORD is with me! I am a mighty warrior! Dare I believe it’s true?
Sound the call to arms, for I have been sent to you, now is the time to move!”
“Gideon, you have too many men: Send them home if they’re afraid
Lest You boast of salvation by your hand: bring them to the water’s edge
I will separate them there
You only need 600 men”
“We only need 600 men!!
The LORD is with me; I am a might warrior, now is the time to move!
Sound the trumpets, smash the jars, and on this night lift your battle cry,
‘This is for the LORD and for Gideon.’”
My name is complicated. My parents named me Theresa. My friends call me "Pinky." My professional title is "Ms. Lindell." Choose one.