We have come to the end of the week, but I have not come to the end of examples of those who lacked in Scripture and the God who supplied all their needs.
Because like us, all the truth recorded in the Bible involves people just like you and me.
Frail and faulty human beings on a journey with a mighty and perfect God walking alongside them.
And like us, a lot of days it was hard to “feel” that power.
So we are ending with another favorite lacker of mine…Gideon.
In the opening verses of Judges 6 we find the children of Israel, yet again alienated from God due to the evil of turning to other gods. He has pulled back His hand of protection and the people have been under siege from the Midianites and Amalekites for seven years.
Our boy Gideon is threshing grain in a wine press, which apparently is not ideal for the task but offered some kind of protection that perhaps this time he would be able to walk away with some food for his family before it got taken by one army or the other.
And in this setting, the Angel of the LORD shows up and greets Gideon with these perplexing words…
“The LORD is with you, you mighty man of valor!” Judges 6:12
Can you just picture Gideon, all hunched down below the wall of the wine press?
Furtively threshing wheat while taking nervous looks over his shoulders.
I can imagine him looking up with a start and then looking around all about for the heavily armed soldier that this Angel is referring to.
Then he looks back in confusion, points to himself and gestures…who???…me???
And then Gideon quickly gets over the shock that this angelic presence has just called him a mighty warrior, and he points out that not only is he totally NOT that…but the LORD is most assuredly NOT with him or his people.
He is the least in a family that is the least in a nation that has been forsaken by God.
So might and valor and favor are lacking.
But more importantly, so is the God they had shunned.
The only thing not lacking was oppression from the enemy on all sides.
because in verse 14, look closely at the wording of the only response this lacker receives…
Then the LORD turned to him and said, “Go in this might of yours, and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites. Have I not sent you?”
One more time campers….
Then the LORD
<3 the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…the God of Israel
turned to him
<3 the God who had turned away from them now turned back to them
“Go in this might of yours,
and you shall save Israel from the hand of the Midianites.
<3 From your enemies…from your oppressors…from those I allowed to discipline you so that you would turn back to Me
Have I not sent you?”
<3 This is MY idea, Gideon…and I am with you…I have assigned you and I will equip you for the task.
The whole story is a great one and I hope you will take time to read how patient the LORD is with Gideon as he gives God more double checks than any other person in the whole Old or New Testament.
However, our take away for today is this…
in our lack…
perceived or very real places where we just have nothing worthy of serving to the extent God has called us to serve…or love as God has called us to love…or share the Gospel…or overthrow the enemy who is oppressing us and/or all that we love…
GO in the strength you have today…
whatever measure you have…
And as we go, He will add to our strength and provide what we need because…
Has He not sent us?
He really did say….
In fact they are the last words the LORD said to His disciples before He left this earth and those words ring out to us today
With God we lack nothing…
that can prevent us to be MORE THAN conquerors every. single. day.