Two little words that strike terror into the hearts of many. I once read a poll that said public speaking was the number one fear for most people. Yup, it ranked right up there with the fear of dying or being caught without your make-up on!
When I was in elementary school, I was a good student – very often, one of the teacher’s “pets.” I was that mousy little nerd that everyone got mad at for raising the class grade curve. I’m not bragging, just trying to tell you that I wasn’t one of the A-list kids! But, for the most part, school assignments were easy. Except when the teacher said those horrible words…
ORAL BOOK REPORT.
There wasn’t much I was more afraid of than standing in front of the classroom and giving a book report. (Maybe frogs – but that’s a long story!) I often missed school on the day I was supposed to give my report. Mom was kind and understanding about it – but she usually drew the line at missing two days in a row! So, inevitably, the dreaded day would arrive. I would pray that my name wasn’t called, or that the teacher would forget I hadn’t given my report. No such luck. It was finally my turn – “ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for thee.”
Ever feel like that now? Like it’s your turn, and you’re just plain scared?
Let me tell you about Gideon. The story of Gideon, which is found in Judges, chapters 6-8, was my grandpa’s favorite. I guess he liked an underdog. Me, too. Gideon was working in his threshing floor when God sent him a challenge. But Gideon feared that his own limitations would prevent God from working through him. I love their conversation (read it in Judges 6:11-16). However, I want to focus on the three key phrases that God used to calm Gideon’s fears:
“Mighty hero, the LORD is with you!” (6:12)
“Go with the strength you have…” (6:14)
“I am sending you.” (6:14)
Gideon had his weak moments, and I’m sure he was scared – but he obeyed God.
The lesson for us?
God uses us in spite of our limitations, our failures, our fears.
He is with us – He is sending us. We don’t have to worry about how strong we feel (or don’t feel)! He’s just telling us to GO!
He will prepare us for tomorrow when it comes!
By the way, just ignore that noise…
Because though my knees are knockin’, my feet are gonna keep on walkin’…
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