Receiving Encouragement Requires Courage






  “If you are afraid to attack, go down to the camp with your servant Purah and listen to what they are saying. Afterward, you will be encouraged to attack the camp.” So he and Purah his servant went down to the outposts of the camp.” Judges 6: 10-11

Do you see the irony here? If you’re afraid with only 300, take just one and sneak up into harm’s way.

God is offering to reassure Gideon, but even the means to receive the reassurance requires an extraordinary step of faith. If caught, surely they would be put to death and there would be no battle.

Where do you hold out and miss the blessing of God’s provision and God’s reassurance because of fear?

Gideon was afraid.  He was afraid in the winepress.  He was afraid while tearing down the altar to Baal. And now he is afraid of going into battle with only 300. But his fear did not paralyze him. Gideon knew God was greater than his fears. 

That’s the essence of faith – a confidence in God that is greater than our fears.

He stepped out and obeyed even when afraid.  That’s the essence of faith – a confidence in God that is greater than our fears.

In His sovereignty God led Gideon to eavesdrop on a conversation between two Midianite soldiers.  Of all the thousands of men in that army camp, it’s extraordinary that God led Gideon to that one man who had the dream. It’s extraordinary that Gideon arrived just in time to hear the man sharing it.  It defies coincidence.  Even the dream itself was God’s provision.

Here’s what Gideon heard while listening in on the conversation between the two soldiers…

I had a dream,” he was saying. “A round loaf of barley bread came tumbling into the Midianite camp. It struck the tent with such force that the tent overturned and collapsed.”
His friend responded, “This can be nothing other than the sword of Gideon son of Joash, the Israelite. God has given the Midianites and the whole camp into his hands.” Judges 7: 13b-14

God provides both the dream AND the interpretation through these Midianite soldiers.  And God’s timing is perfect for Gideon to hear it.

Gideon’s response is the only possible, appropriate response:  he worshiped God

He praises God for his clear provision.

Do you and I praise and worship God when He provides?  Do you and I stop to acknowledge and thank God when He shows up?

The woman of God worships God.


Laura Macfarlan