Friday, March 11, 2011

40 Days of Lint, Day Three: A Dry Fleece

Have you ever been given a job for which you felt unqualified? There have been several times throughout my life when I’ve been surprised by an offer I couldn’t refuse. The first came right out of college, when an editor/friend asked me to write a book of plays. Several years later, when I was in my twenties, our pastor asked if I would consider starting a Women’s Ministries program at church. The summer after my oldest daughter finished first grade, she began begging me to homeschool. Years later, after volunteering some with missionaries in the Philippines, I received an invitation to teach an international writer’s conference there.

Just this last year, God has led my husband and I to open a halfway house for men in our city. Neither one of us have ever had any aspirations to do such a thing! But time after time He has confirmed His plan and opened doors.

To each of these requests, my initial response was, “Who me? You’ve got to be kidding! I don’t know how to do that. I’m not smart enough or experienced enough.” Every time, I’ve prayed, asked a lot of questions, and lay my ‘fleeces’ out before the Lord to see if it was really me He wanted. Each time, God confirmed the call and enabled me to carry out His plan. I really relate to Gideon’s story.

Secretly threshing wheat in a winepress so the Midianite raiders couldn’t steal the grain, he was just minding his own business when an angel showed up. “You’re God’s man of the hour,” he said. “He’s going to use you to defeat the Midians.” Gideon thought he must have heard wrong.

“Who me?” I’m a nobody - the runt of my family from the smallest clan in Israel. You’ve got to be kidding!” But God wasn’t. Gideon needed a little encouragement though before he was ready to charge into battle.

“‘If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised - look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said.’ And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew—a bowlful of water.

Then Gideon said to God, ‘Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request. Allow me one more test with the fleece, but this time make the fleece dry and let the ground be covered with dew.’ That night God did so. Only the fleece was dry; all the ground was covered with dew” (Judges 6:36-40).

Why would God choose someone with such obvious insecurities? Even though the odds were already against them, God told Gideon to downsize his army from 32,000 to 300 men and go to war with only jars, torches, and trumpets. There was no way 300 men could defeat thousands of well trained, well armed soldiers. His reasoning? So Israel couldn’t boast they had saved themselves through their own strength (Judges 7:2).

It’s the same today. The strongest, most capable person without God is nothing, but the smallest, clumsiest, least educated person with God, is sure to win. So even when we’re feeling dried up and unprepared to do the job, God has a plan. He can use us if we’re willing to let go of our insecurities and let Him do the work through us.

Lint Removed: Insecurity
Cleaning Process: Answer God’s Call to Action

No comments:

Post a Comment