Unending Mercy: A Three Week Series on the Life of Gideon
Welcome back for week two in our Life of Gideon series. You can catch up and read week one here. God has revealed deep truths through His word that has encouraged my heart. My hope is that this series does the same for you.
Have you ever felt like God has gone quiet? Do you find yourself wondering if He is even there?
You’re not alone if you answered yes. At one time or another, most of us have asked these questions: God, where are you? Do you realize the pain I’m in? Do you even care?
Gideon, along with the other Israelites, more than likely asked the same questions when they fell into the hands of the Midianites. For several years, they lived in fear as the Midianites, on a daily basis, would come to destroy the crops and slaughter the livestock. The Bible says, “[…]they invaded the land to ravage it.” (Judges 6:5).
To Gideon, God seemed far off in the distance, unconcerned by his torment.
When the Angel of the Lord approached Gideon telling him the LORD is with you, Gideon let the Angel know exactly how he felt.
“Pardon me, my lord,” Gideon replied, “but if the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us? Where are all His wonders that our ancestors told us about when they said, ‘Did not the LORD bring us up out of Egypt?’ But now the LORD has abandoned us and given us into the hand of Midian.” Judges 6:13
You can hear the hurt in Gideon’s reply; a typical response when one feels let down or betrayed in some way. Here is the truth: God never abandoned the Israelites; the Israelites abandoned God.
The angel of the Lord went up from Gilgal to Bokim and said to the Israelites, “I brought you out of Egypt into this land that I swore to give your ancestors, and I said I would never break my covenant with you.2 For your part, you were not to make any covenants with the people living in this land; instead, you were to destroy their altars. But you disobeyed my command. Why did you do this?” Judges 2:1-2
Before we blame God for leaving us, let us ask ourselves first, “Have I left God?”
I’m not saying this is done intentionally. Perhaps it has been a gradual drift. We get busy and miss a Sunday service or two. Our quiet times are hurried or skipped altogether. Time in prayer gets pushed to the end of the day when we can barely stay awake.
Consider this: God is with us, right by our side, but because we’ve drifted, we’re too far gone spiritually to know it.
Gideon didn’t realize it was the Angel of the Lord when he came upon him that day, threshing wheat in the winepress. He addresses the Angel as lord with a lower case L. Some other translations read Sir. The Creator of the universe is standing right in front of him, and he doesn’t even know it.
But Gideon is about to find out exactly who this visitor is.
Then the Lord turned to him and said, “Go with the strength you have, and rescue Israel from the Midianites. I am sending you!” Judges 6:14
Thank goodness we serve a God that is full of love and Mercy. The Lord completely dismisses Gideon’s response and lack of awareness for who He is.
God could have laid into Gideon. He could have let him have it by throwing past mistakes in his face. But He didn’t because that’s not the heart or character of the God we serve.
We serve a God of second chances, who says our sins are as far as the east is from the west. He doesn’t want to make us feel guilty. He wants us to know that we are loved. He longs for us to believe He will fight for us, never giving up in His pursuit for our hearts.God may feel far off, but His word promises that He is with us, He is for us, and He will restore… Click To Tweet
Now it’s your turn: Do you feel like God has gone silent? Could there be any hidden sin that needs exposure?
There are many reasons for God’s silence, some of which come from a place of deep intimacy and fellowship with God. However, if you are feeling like God is distant, I would suggest some good quality time in prayer. Ask God to reveal Himself. Keep a journal nearby to write down insights.
Be sure to come back next week for the final conclusion to the series.
With lots of love,