The Enemy of Trust
I was praying as I travelled over the Atlantic for our upcoming AGM. At that point I had no idea what I was going to share with our church family. I knew I wanted it to be encouraging and celebratory. But had no idea about the actual content. So at every opportunity I prayed for clarity and direction, but the clarity I desired was not present.
April 21 our tour brought us to northern Israel to a place called Ma’ayan Harod National Park. This is the location of Harod Springs recorded for us in Judges 7. I won’t get into the details of Judges 7 except to say it is the account of Gideon and his 300 soldiers … I encourage you to read the account for yourself. That moment the Lord seemed to say that’s it right there!
Military commanders always want to have enough troops to accomplish their mission. Most would prefer having too many not too few, but not everyone agrees on just how many troops will be enough.
When Gideon recruited an army of 32,000 men to stand against those who oppressed the Israelites, the Lord told him, “The people who are with you are too many for Me to give the Midianites into their hands, lest Israel claim glory for itself against Me, saying, ‘My own hand has saved me’” (Judges 7:2).
So the Lord began to reduce Gideon’s army. When the fearful were allowed to leave, 22,000 men went home (Judges 7:3). A second reduction cut the force from the remaining 10,000 to 300 troops, of whom the Lord said, “By the three hundred … I will save you, and deliver the Midianites into your hand” (Judges 7:7). And so it happened (Judges 7:19-23).
In our life of faith as individuals and as a church family, our resources can become the enemy of trust. God wants us to depend on Him, not our own strength, whether physical, financial, or intellectual. When the Lord reduces our resources from “32,000 to 300,” it is not punishment. It is preparation for Him to be glorified through our lives as we acknowledge and trust His power.
If you remember from Sunday FF Bruce’s paraphrase … I leave it with you:
2 Cor. 12:9 “My power is most fully displayed when my people are weak.”
See You Sunday,