I Am The Least

Read the first part of Judges 6 with me: "Yet again the People of Israel went back to doing evil in God’s sight. God put them under the domination of Midian for seven years. Midian overpowered Israel. Because of Midian, the People of Israel made for themselves hideouts in the mountains—caves and forts. When Israel planted its crops, Midian and Amalek, the easterners, would invade them, camp in their fields, and destroy their crops all the way down to Gaza. They left nothing for them to live on, neither sheep nor ox nor donkey. Bringing their cattle and tents, they came in and took over, like an invasion of locusts. And their camels—past counting! They marched in and devastated the country. The People of Israel, reduced to grinding poverty by Midian, cried out to God for help." (v. 1-6)

Pretty bleak times for Israel. Enter, Gideon. Hiding in a wine press, Gideon is threshing wheat in private to avoid being seen by the Midianites when the angel of the Lord appeared to him and said, "God is with you, mighty warrior." Now, this exchange is where this gets good for me, because first, I can imagine Gideon looking over his shoulder when he replied, "Who, me? My family is the weakest, and I am the least of them." But the angel of the Lord knew what Gideon was capable of - and probably knew the future - and addressed Gideon by his God-given character and future reputation and said, "Go in your strength." (v. 14)

Wow. This wasn't some pep talk: You can do it, Gideon. This was a description: God is with you, man of valor and you've already done it.

As we start the week, what's on your plate? Big meeting at work? School stuff? How's your health? Let's go to Him together as a family. List your prayer requests for the week or simply say "unspoken" and we will all pray for each other. Gideon knew he was the least, but with God he had a future. Like us.

- Jimmy Peña