Recently, I everywhere I turn I hear the story of Gideon and his 300 men. You can find it in Judges 7 if you would like to read it, but I will give you the short version. God calls Gideon, in the most unlikely of places, the threshing floor of a winepress. I find it interesting that when God calls Gideon he says, “One day the angel of God came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, whose son Gideon was threshing wheat in the winepress, out of sight of the Midianites. The angel of God appeared to him and said, “God is with you, O mighty warrior!” (Judges 6: 11-12). At this point Gideon was in the winepress hiding from the Midianites, but yet God calls him “O mighty warrior”. He doesn’t look like a mighty warrior to me, but I am not God. Obviously. God can see in us what we are going to be, not what we are right now.
So, He calls Gideon to go fight the Midianites. “But God faced him directly: “Go in this strength that is yours. Save Israel from Midian. Haven’t I just sent you?”
15 Gideon said to him, “Me, my master? How and with what could I ever save Israel? Look at me. My clan’s the weakest in Manasseh and I’m the runt of the litter.” (Judges 6: 14-15). Have you ever said that to God? Me? Really, God? I am nobody, and you want me to do this? I certainly have. I say it all the time. Really God, me? You want me to adopt this child with special needs? Really God, me? You want me to lead a Bible Study? Really God, me? You want me to raise 4 young kids? The list goes on.
So, after testing God with his fleece, Gideon goes to round-up an army. He has about 3,200 men. God says that is too many. So, he works it down to 300. I find this extremely interesting. Why did God do this? Well, it tells us in Judges 7:2 “You have too large an army with you. I can’t turn Midian over to them like this—they’ll take all the credit, saying, ‘I did it all myself,’ and forget about me. ”
You would think that God would want Gideon to have as many men as possible to defeat this army of it looks like about 15,000. But, God didn’t want Gideon or his men to get a big head. He wanted them to know that only He could have defeated these armies. Which He did do at the end of the story.
Do you feel like you are being asked of God to walk into battle with 300 men? Is there something in your life that He is asking you to do that seems impossible? I have to say that I know for a fact God has been bringing this story to my attention (no less than 5 times in the last week from different sources, no kidding!) because He has called me to do things that I am incredulous about. I have fear and doubt about doing them. But I know He is saying to me today that nothing is impossible with Him. He wants the credit for the big things He has called us to. He wants to make it so that there can be no doubt who has done this. However, it requires our action. We have to make the first step of faith and walk out of our hiding places to do big things for God. What is God asking of you today? Will you step out in faith and do it, even if it seems impossible? There is a song on the radio right now with a line I really like, it says, “doesn’t matter what you’ve heard, impossible is not a word, it’s just a reason, a reason not to try.” If you never try to step out in faith to do what God is calling you to do, you will never know if you could have done that impossible thing. You must come out from your safe place, though, in order to do it.