Thursday, October 6, 2016

day 6: brave when I feel un-brave


Before we get into today's post I have to share something. (Big breath). I'm going to a new church. It is so hard to write those words. It has not been something I have broadcast. I love (present tense) the people at the church I went to. Just some stuff happened (in our family, that I am just not ready to talk about) over the summer so now I'm at this new church. And we have had a positive experience there. And it has been good for us as a family. It has been the most positive experience my kids have had with church maybe ever. But here is the thing. At this church they go forward for communion almost every week and as someone with social anxiety and a complicated family dynamic it is the worst two minutes of my life every week. Should I go forward by myself? With a sleeping baby in my arms? I don't feel comfortable in this new space and I don't want to go forward. There is no pressure, except from within. Last Sunday I sat glued to my seat, and then they played the closing song "no longer slaves to fear" and I felt like such a hypocrite. I am a slave to my social anxiety in this situation. But I'm also a child of God.


Yesterday we broke off mid-sentence in Gideon's story. Today we'll pick back up right where we left off. So the Isrealites were worshipping other gods and doing evil in the eyes of the LORD - all caps, covenant God. The Israelites were breaking the covenant and so God kept up his end of the deal and allowed them to reap the harvest of their unrighteousness. Gideon is hiding trying to scrape a little bit of food together when the angel approaches him and greets him as a warrior. 
How about you? Who do you think you are? But more importantly who does God say you are? 
Based on this response on a scale of 1-10 (10 being super-brave) how brave does Gideon seem to think he is? 
How is Gideon feeling about this task? (6:27) 
How does this small success help prepare him for his bigger task? (6:34&36) 
What is Gideon renamed? (6:28-32)
I know God is meeting us here in our places where we feel un-brave, on my kitchen floor and sitting at church on Sunday. He is calling me forward, not because of anything compulsory and shame is the last thing he'd want me to feel about this, but he is calling me forward because there is blessing in getting out of my seat, and for Gideon, it was getting out of that wine press, because there is blessing ahead. 

The angel of the Lord speaks Gideon's true identity. He called Gideon who God had created Gideon to be - a mighty warrior. The same is true of you and me. God sees us as He created us to be. Sin warps his beautiful creation, it causes us to flail around and fail and fall but still God sees His creation, made to reflect a tiny piece of Him. Like Gideon, cowering in the wine press we might see ourselves as small, insignificant, fearful, inadequate - that is pretty much me right now, sitting on my kitchen floor with my baby right this very minute. But God sees you and me, us as mighty warriors. He sees us as worshippers, intercessors, women (and men) who make a difference in His Kingdom. 


How does Gideon respond? (Judges 6:13-18) 


How about you? On a scale of 1-10 how brave do you think you are? 

Are there any areas of your life where you feel distinctly un-brave? 

How does God respond to Gideon's lack of faith? (6:16)

What is Gideon's first task?(6:25-26)




One of the things that I've noticed in the stories of the Bible is the way God prepares people, either through a relative who prepared the way, or by circumstances helping to baby-step it out into harder, scarier things. How have you seen God prepare you for the things He is asking you to be brave about? 

What does God say about weakness and strength? 

Hebrews 11:34
Romans 8:5-8
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
1 Corinthians 1:26-28

So my challenge to you is to take a quiet moment with God and ask Him - who did you create me to be? Who am I to you? How is that different from how I see myself? I invite you to pray back to God anything you are feeling the need to be brave about in your life but are maybe feeling timid, weak or altogether not enough. Pray God's word back to Him. Declare the truth of His word over your circumstances.


Listen: I literally heard this song for the first time today. I feel like it is the song I needed today, so I shifted the song that I had planned for today. This whole album is amazing! Here is your song for today:

1 comment:

  1. "He called Gideon who God had created Gideon to be - a mighty warrior. The same is true of you and me. God sees us as He created us to be. Sin warps his beautiful creation, it causes us to flail around and fail and fall but still God sees His creation, made to reflect a tiny piece of Him."

    This is so beautifully-written, Faith. This quiet time entry has impacted my heart in a powerful way-- thank you for writing it, sharing it.~

    Sincerely,
    Tiffany C.

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