Reading the story of Gideon in Judges 6:36-7:15…..a man chosen by God for a great work. Yet he struggled to believe it could be true that he would be chosen for such a task as delivering the people of Israel from their enemies. He was an insignificant man from an insignificant family. He realized that he couldn’t step out into the plans of God with such doubt. Thus Gideon requested the fleece, which God so mercifully answered. Still there was doubt, so he requested another sign which God also granted. But still Gideon did not have the faith needed to embark into the purposes of God for his life. The questions he thought he needed answered, the things he thought he needed God to do to convince him, did not help. They did not strengthen his faith. And although he began to step out into obedience and assemble the army, yet his heart remained unconvinced. But when Gideon has exhausted all his questions, all his fleeces, and determines to step out into a fearful obedience solely based on what God has said, then God brings a word to him that settles the matter in his heart. Gideon no longer questions, but worships. And the purpose that God had declared to him (“arise, go down against the camp, for I have delivered it into your hand” 7:9) now becomes the faith filled cry of his own heart as he gives the command to his army – “arise, for The Lord has delivered the camp of Midian into your hand.” 7:15. Gideon has become convinced.
We are often so confident that if God would just answer this question or provide that confirming sign that we could then be steadfast and immovable in God’s purposes. However I have found, like Gideon, that this is so often insufficient. But the God who made this heart knows how to persuade this heart and utterly convince me and bring me to a place of settled faith about a thing. May we learn from Gideon and be obedient to our Lord, even when it is a fearful obedience. Marching forward into His purposes, with an ear open toward heaven, we too will surely receive the faith we need to finish our course victoriously and with great joy. Amen!