I love the story of Gideon, the man who didn't know what he had. He came to mind in my studies this morning. I was looking at Exodus 20, where the Children of Israel were afraid to go up to the burning, shaking mountain with God. I can't say as I blame them. Most of the time throughout the Bible, when someone encountered God or an angel, they were afraid. Many times, the first thing God's messenger said was, "Fear not." Not so with Gideon.
And that's why I don't buy the traditional line of thinking that he was a scared little man hiding out from the Midianites. When God's messenger showed up, they said, "Hail mighty hero. God is with you." (NLT) Gideon immediately responded with a question. He asked respectfully, "Sir, if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us?" Didn't seem to be any fear there. Gideon just started asking real questions, for which he was NOT condemned, I might add.
As I continued thinking about this story and rereading it, Gideon wasn't hiding in fear. He was determined that the Midianites were NOT going to get his wheat! Not today, Midianites! Secondly, I realized that Gideon was trying to care for his family. Now, honestly, I've thought of Gideon as a warrior. I hadn't thought of him as a caregiver. But there it was, plain as day. The Warrior-Caregiver.
He wasn't scared - he was determined, gutsy, tenacious, and actively pursuing caring for his family. Much like us, actually. How many times have you had to roll up your sleeves and actively advocate for your loved one(s)? How many times have you been called names or avoided because you just wouldn't let what was best for your LO go? How many times do you find yourself trying to do a time-consuming, emotionally draining job with very few resources? How often do you find yourself running to God for strength, direction, wisdom, or comfort? How often do you grab scriptures to remind you that you are not alone, that He is fighting for you, or that you can make it through another day? How many times do you know that God definitely gave you grace because resources were short and time leaked through your fingers? Hmmm. You are a warrior caregiver, too!
Today, I'll continue thinking about the tenacity of Gideon and his determination to not let go. I'll remind myself that his questions were not signs of weakness but of strength. My meditations will be on how God continues to provide over and over again. I'll turn my thoughts to His provision and away from my lack - even if it means I'm threshing wheat at midnight to hide from the enemy. I'll also remind myself that what others consider fear - is courage in the face of fear. So, I'll tighten my grip on His extended hand today and let Him pull me closer to His heart - He loves the warrior. He loves the caregiver. I can trust Him for today. Will you join me?