He Called Me What I’m Not, Part 1of4, Evans Olang

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Judges 6:11-40&7:1-25, "…The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor"

We all love the presence of God, His Son, the Holy Ghost and God’s Angels. Any time we feel alone and the thought of no one cares, there is always a way God reaches out to us in ways no one else can.

In the book of Judges 6:11 begins by reading, "Now the Angel of the Lord came and sat under the terebinth tree which was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, while his son Gideon threshed wheat in the winepress in order to hide it from the Midianites". In the story if you begin from the previous chapters, we find how Israel had disobeyed God and how God brought Midianites, Amalekites and the people of the East to come against them. The reason why this came to them was because of the idols they worshiped, this led to some of them taken captive and while others were hiding in caves, on mountains and under some sacred tree where Gideon was found. Gideon was hiding avoid dealing with present situation, he felt like there was nothing more to live for. He had lost hope and confidence, he came from one of the poorest and youngest families. He was hiding in shame, despair, weak, broken, rejected, abused, feeling like a failure, confused wondering where is God when he needs Him the most. Have you ever been in a situation where all you felt was a victim of circumstance and you wondered what is wrong with me that I have to deal with all these?, where is God when I need Him?, He seems to be blessing everyone but me? My neighbors are happy, my friends seem to get it all together, their families are not broken like mine. Ever felt like some people were getting promotions but you? you seem to be trying very hard but they keep raising someone instead of you?, have you ever been somewhere where everything wasn’t working right?, you try to say the right thing but it comes out the wrong way?, you try to succeed but you keep failing? I know some have felt this way and that is what our friend Gideon also felt. This led him to do nothing but thresh wheat under winepress. He had stopped trying, he didn’t see any future out of it and so what was left to do was sit and call it a quit. In his dilemma, the Angel of the Lord appears, sits down under the tree and watches what Gideon is doing in his lost thoughts.

Chapter 6:12-13, "And the Angel of the Lord appeared to Him, and said to him, The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor. Gideon said to Him, "O my Lord, "if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about,….now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites". Here is a man who had suffered for a while, the Angel of the Lord (The Lord in an Angel form) appears and tells him, "the Lord is with you". Lord if you are with me, how come I am suffering?, if you are with me, how come I had to go through this and that? Something to think about, we don’t have to feel the Lord to know He is present, the bible calls Him Jehovah Shammah which means He is present. When you think He wasn’t there He was. You may have not felt like He was doing anything but be assured He was there and in the case of Gideon, He was always there and yet Gideon did not know. Think of it, if God wasn’t with him, he could have been captured, he could have been killed, greater terrible things could have happened but because God was with him, none of these happened to him. You might have been wondering where the Lord was when you broke up with your girlfriend or boyfriend, where was He when you lost your job, when you were sick, when they lied on you, when they prevented you from receiving what you know was meant for you, where was He when your parents went through a divorce, where was He? You did not feel Him when you needed Him and now He appears and calls you what, "mighty man (woman) of Valor"?

To close on part 1, I have to say that whenever God is going to lift someone up, the rooted issues have to be dealt with for where you are going doubts, fear, un answered question cannot come with you for they will be an hindrance to what He wants to do. Gideon is launching His complain but all he needed to understand that regardless of what he went through and had to deal with. And though the presence of God was always there, he needed to appreciate the fact that He manifested Himself in other words revealed Himself marking a beginning of something greater. Whenever the Lord reveals Himself, He has something in mind to accomplish through His chosen vessels who appear to be weak for His own glory. To continue.

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