Have you ever had to do something that you thought was too big and too hard for you to do all by yourself?
Maybe you had to lift something really heavy or do something really hard in a sport you play. We’ve all had those experiences, but I’m pretty sure none of us has ever had to save a whole nation from an evil oppressor.
That’s exactly what Gideon was told to do by the Lord in Judges 6:11-16
Israel was being oppressed by an evil nation called Midian. God had actually caused Israel to be oppressed in Judges 6:1-10 because Israel was disobeying Him and worshipping false gods.
The people of Israel had to hide out in caves and forts, and the Midianites kept stealing their animals and crops.
Israel got so fed up that they finally cried out to the One True God to save them. That’s where our story today about Gideon picks up.
In Chapter 6 Verses 11 and 12, we see an angel approach Gideon while he’s working and telling him that God is with him, and calling him a “mighty man of valor.”
Can you imagine an angel randomly coming up to you and calling you a warrior?
To make things even crazier, he tells Gideon that he’s the man God wants to defeat the Midianite oppressors of Israel.
At this point, anyone would be pretty worried about having to lead a war to save a nation. Gideon asks the angel how he’s supposed to do this when he’s the weakest man in the weakest family of his tribe.
The angel simply tells him that God will be with him.
Looking ahead to Chapter 7 Verse 19, we see that in the end God helped Gideon defeat the Midianites just like the angel says here.
So what can we learn from this crazy story of God using a weak, insignificant person to save a nation?
Chances are most of us can identify with Gideon. We’re just normal guys living normal lives. We’re not important or strong.
But just like Gideon, God can use us despite our weaknesses.
The Bible is filled with stories of weak, insignificant people being used by God. Just look at the twelve apostles! They started out as lowly fisherman and tax collectors, and God used them to establish His church!
So how does God want to use you for Him today?
Here are some ways God wants to use you for His kingdom even when you think you’re insignificant and unimportant.
God wants you to consider others as more important than yourself. By loving others and giving to them without thinking about yourself, God uses you to make Himself known! Jesus says in Matthew 20:16, “The last will be first, and the first will be last.” Living sacrificially is how you are truly great in God’s eyes.
Prayer is how we communicate with God as Christians. When we pray, we are made more and more like God. We get closer to Him, and He strengthens us to be able to do what He commands us to through His Holy Spirit. In this way God works through your weaknesses by giving you His strength instead of your own.
Tell Others About Him.
As Christians it is our duty to tell others about Christ. Whether we only influence one person to accept Christ or we bring thousands to Christ, each soul is infinitely important to God. If you tell others about Christ, you are bringing glory to God and God is using you to further His kingdom, even if you feel like your efforts are weak and insignificant.
Don’t Try To Do Things By Yourself!
When Christians try to live for God, stay away from sin, and tell others about Him by themselves, they aren’t relying on God’s strength that is available to every Christian through the Holy Spirit.
God is most glorified when we rely on Him.
Paul sums this up perfectly in 1 Corinthians 12:10, when he says, “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”
Paul isn’t saying that somehow weaknesses actually make him strong, he’s saying that when he’s at his weakest, God is strongest in him, because it’s not by his strength that he’s living for God, but by God’s strength.
So today if you’re feeling too weak or unimportant to do anything great for God, remember that it’s when we are at our weakest that God uses us the most.
Let’s talk in the comments below:
- What situations are you facing in your life that make you weak?
- How can you rely on God to help you in those situations?