In the mornings, I do a family devotional with my children. At the moment, we are reading through the book of Judges. It isn't that I have never read this portion of Scripture before, but rather, I suppose I had never quite seen it in quite this way. In Judges 6:12 it says, "And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, the LORD is with thee, thou mighty man of valour.""Thou mighty man of valour!" Gideon? Wasn't this the same man that destroyed the altar of Baal and the grove beside it at night because he was afraid of who might see him during the day? Wasn't this the same man who tested the Lord twice with the fleece and the dew to see if he was actually hearing correctly? Wasn't this the same man who needed to go into the camp of the Midianites to overhear a dream given by the Lord to have the confidence to fight the battle?
"Thou mighty man of valour." And then it occurred to me that God doesn't just see us as we are now, but what we will become through Him. I understand Gideon well. I have hidden in my own darkness of night cutting down the groves of sinfulness because I was afraid to do it in the light. What might others think of me? I have tested the Lord on issues, not accepting what I know to be His leading for fear...what if I'm wrong? What would that mean to me? What would the repercussions be? Yes, I know Gideon. He is a man much like myself, fearful and at times weak. And yet, the angel of the Lord says, "Thou mighty man of valour." And the Creator God calls him a man of valour. Isn't that just like our Elohim? He reaches down into the weakest, most sinful, and fear-stricken parts of society and creates men and women of valour for Him. It is only this kind of God that takes the lowest of women in Jericho...the prostitute Rahab and grafts her into the chosen people of Israel and gives her the supreme honor of having Messiah come through her bloodline. And it is the same Creator God that picks up the shattered pieces of sin that has littered my life and says I will make something of that girl...and it will be by the sacrifice of my Son that will accomplish it.
I once heard a preacher, E.V. Hill, speaking at Dr. David Jeremiah's church. He made the comment that he was just a crooked stick, but God was still able to hit a straight line with him. Doesn't that describe Gideon, Rahab, me? There will be those that knew me before Christ did His transforming work and they will always see me crouching in the darkness behind trees in the grove. And yet, Christ chose to pick me up, despite all the shards of sin and broken pieces scattered around me. He took this crooked stick and He's in the process of hitting a straight line with her.
So, the next time you see that younger brother and sister in the Lord that just doesn't seem to understand all the monumental things of scripture...or the broken man or woman facing seemingly insurmountable odds...or that child of yours that you have to tell the same thing to again and again for the umpteenth time...remember my friend....you may just be looking at a Gideon in the making!