The angel of the Lord came, and he sat under the oak that was in Ophrah, which belonged to Joash, the Abiezrite. His son Gideon was threshing wheat in the winepress in order to hide it from the Midianites. Then the angel of the Lord appeared to him and said, “The Lord is with you, valiant warrior.”
Gideon said to him, “Please, my lord, if the Lord is with us, why has all this happened? And where are all his wonders that our ancestors told us about? They said, ‘Hasn’t the Lord brought us out of Egypt?’ But now the Lord has abandoned us and handed us over to Midian.”
The Lord turned to him and said, “Go in the strength you have and deliver Israel from the grasp of Midian. I am sending you!”
He said to him, “Please, Lord, how can I deliver Israel? Look, my family is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the youngest in my father’s family.”
“But I will be with you,” the Lord said to him. “You will strike Midian down as if it were one man.”
Don’t you just love how God’s answer to Gideon’s doubts and insecurity is His presence?
God doesn’t refute Gideon’s claims that he is too weak, too young, too poor, essentially, too much of a nobody to be called by God and do brave things for Him. God knows exactly who Gideon is and exactly what his background, struggles, and qualifications (or lack thereof) are. But still, God calls him a “valiant warrior.” Why? Because of what comes before that: “The Lord is with you.”
God’s presence is mightier than any disadvantage or setback.
Whenever we face something that’s too much for us, God answers, “But I will be with you.”
And those six words change everything.
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