If you have to go into a fight, who are you taking with you? Who is going to lead you and your army into battle? You’re going to pick the biggest, strongest, meanest guy you can find. The guy who inspires (or terrifies) people to follow him. He’s the guy who can flip your car. He’s the guy who simply whistles and everyone falls into line behind him. That’s the guy you’re taking into a fight with you.
Israel has a big fight ahead of them. God needs to pick the guy who will lead them. Gideon was that man.
When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior.”
Judges 6:12 (NIV)
This guy must be something special if an angel of the Lord is calling him a mighty warrior. Gideon must be big and strong and well-able to lead an army.
“But Lord,” Gideon asked, “how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family.”
Judges 6:15 (NIV)
So… Gideon isn’t a big, strong leader. He’s the runt of the litter.
The Lord answered, “I will be with you, and you will strike down all the Midianites together.”
Judges 6:16 (NIV)
Many of us disqualify ourselves from our calling saying that we’re not enough. We’re not big enough. We’re not strong enough. We’re not smart enough. We don’t have what it takes. But that’s the point.
Not only did God pick the least consequential person from the weakest clan, he took an army from thirty-two thousand down to three hundred and won the battle. God isn’t nearly as interested in brains and brawn as He is in obedience. He is not looking for greatness, but humility.
Then [Jesus] said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For he who is least among you all—he is the greatest.”
Luke 9:48 (NIV)
When God takes the least and leads them into victory, there is no doubt as to whom it belongs. If we were capable of accomplishing the will of God on our own, He would never receive the glory. But because He calls the weak and the wounded, His glory shines through. No one is disqualified from the call.
Gideon wasn’t a mighty warrior on his own. It was because God was with him that he became a mighty warrior. Maybe you’re not called to lead an army into battle, but God has called you to do something great. Don’t count yourself out because of what you can or can’t do, but rather count on God because of what He can do.
Read: Judges 6-7, Luke 8:1-21