Under cover of darkness... (Gideon, part 3)

>> Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Young Gideon was still shaking clear down to his toes as he walked back to his people. Thoughts raced and swirled through his mind making him dizzy. Why would God take the time to talk to him? Again, the happenings played out in his mind: "minding my own business, visited by angel, was told I would save Israel, I dared talk back to him, asked for a sign, got my answer, built an altar to God."

It was too much to comprehend and doubt started rearing its head. The closer he got to home, the more he began to wonder if it really happened. That soon changed, though. As he walked into the village, all eyes were on him. His brother and sister must have spread the word.

That night he lay in bed contemplating this yet again when God spoke to him.

"Take your father's best seven-year-old bull, the prime one. Tear down your father's Baal altar and chop down the Asherah fertility pole beside it. Then build an altar to God, your God, on the top of this hill. Take the prime bull and present it as a Whole-Burnt-Offering, using firewood from the Asherah pole that you cut down."

This time Gideon sprang into action. He chose some faithful men and he did exactly what God asked him to do. The only thing is, though: he did it in the cover of darkness. Surely God didn't mean for him to do it when all could watch? He would for sure get killed if he did that. No, tearing down Baal's altars would be a death sentence.

People quickly figured out who dared mess with their idols. They all stood at Gideon's door and demanded that he should die for his sins.

Good old Dad saved Gideon that day. (31) "Are you going to fight Baal's battles for him? Are you going to save him? Anyone who takes Baal's side will be dead by morning. If Baal is a god in fact, let him fight his own battles and defend his own altar."

So there you have it. Gideon was called by God to tear down Baal's stronghold. He did it, although quietly, in the cover of night. How can we blame him? Good old Dad had to step in and stand up for his son. Gideon had trouble seeing himself the way God saw him: as a strong, courageous man of God. He still had to grow into his shoes but grow he would.

How does God see you? I remind my friends all the time that we are children of the King so we can keep our heads lifted high. That's the way God sees you. How do your friends see you? I have friends who must be looking at themselves in circus mirrors. That's the only thing I can figure out. They don't see what mighty men/women they are. But I am the same way. I can see it in others but not in myself. We are all in the same shield of darkness. If we would just come into the light -- do what God asks us to do, when He asks us to do it -- Wow! I wonder how much our lives would change?

Let there be LIGHT! Okay now, its light. Come walk with me! Let's see what we can do for God today!

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