By Jonathan Jude
Youth Church is a place where young people can learn about God’s love, grow with one another and be honest and open about the real issues young people face in the modern day. Sessions are based on the foundation of God’s word – the Bible.
The topic of this session covered Judges chapter 6. Here we saw a segment of Gideon’s life.
(For context please read Judges Chapter 6)
Three key themes emerged during our discussion.
Are you qualified?
We all know that feeling of excitement to apply for the perfect job role. But I’m sure at some point we’ve all been discouraged after reading the candidate requirements realising you don’t have the qualifications, or the experience requested.
However, there are many instances in history where people that didn’t seem to be qualified prove more than competent for important tasks and roles. This is exactly what we saw in Gideon’s story in Judges 6.
God presented a plan to Gideon – where Gideon would deliver Israel out of the hands of the Midianites. From Gideon’s position this idea was too overwhelming. He didn’t believe in his abilities to achieve such a feat. We see this in Judges 6:15 “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
Even if you don’t believe you have what it takes. Even when you think you’re not blessed with gifts and talents like your peers. I’m here to tell you that your God has uniquely chosen you for a purpose.
He wants to use you in mighty ways if you let him. Never forget, one man/woman plus the favour of God equals ability. God doesn’t call the qualified he qualifies the called.
What does confidence look like? Confidence can be described as one’s belief in themselves to deliver and succeed. In our human state we sometimes adopt a negative perception of ourselves and our reality. This state of mind can become habitual leaving us paralysed from walking in our purpose. This is the antithesis of God’s plan for our lives.
Godfidence is what we need. Our whole identity should be based in God and his word. Proverbs 3:26 says “For the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.”
Gideon lacked confidence in himself and he also lacked confidence in God. He placed more faith in his present reality instead of God’s miraculous ability. Judges 6:13 says “Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us?”.
Placing faith in only what you can see will be your downfall. Having confidence in God means trusting in his word even if you can’t see his hand at work. God knew how to speak life into Gideon to encourage him. In Judges 6:12, God addressed Gideon as a “mighty warrior”. In verse 16 God went on to speak victory detailing how Gideon would win the battle.
Every day we have the opportunity to speak life over our lives and the lives of others around us. Gideon needed a positive push to realise his potential – and we in the modern day are no different.
We should always look out for opportunities to strengthen our faith. These opportunities come in the form of challenges & difficulties that life tries to throw our way. It is during these times that we must hold on to God & his word.
As humans we often find this difficult to do this consistently. Gideon struggled with this also, despite the fact Gideon spoke directly to the Lord, who promised him the victory. Initially Gideon’s faith in himself & God was not strong enough to move forward confidently.
In Judges 6:13 we see Gideon quoting back to the signs & wonders of his ancestors. We cannot rely on the faith of others, we ourselves must have a personal relational relationship with God. When you don’t have any tangible experiences with God, how can you have faith?
Within the story we see one thing clearly, God’s love & patience with Gideon. As Gideon continued to doubt God’s calling as so many of us do, he made two requests for God to prove God’s promise. Judges 6: 36-40.
Imagine that? Doubting God that much that you ask him to prove his power, not once but twice. God could have got frustrated with Gideon & chosen someone else for the task at hand but in his love he didn’t. Instead he instilled the confidence in Gideon to deliver the Israelites from the Midianities.
Let us remember God’s promise in Matthew 17:20 “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”