"The People of Israel, reduced to grinding poverty by Midian, cried out to GOD
for help." (Judg 6:6, MSG)
What happens when someone cries out to God?
He answers! But not always in the way we expect Him to...
"The angel of the LORD came and sat down under the oak in Ophrah that belonged to Joash the Abiezrite, where his son Gideon was threshing wheat in a winepress to keep it from the Midianites. When the angel of the LORD appeared to Gideon, he said, 'The LORD is with you, mighty warrior.' '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.'" (Judg 6:11-13, NIV2)
Gideon was the answer to these prayers, but he didn't know it yet. When the angel appeared to him, he was far from being a pillar of faith. Instead he spent his time complaining that God had abandoned them.
How often don't we do the same? How often haven't we also said, "If the LORD is with us, why has all this happened to us?"
We forget that it's through adversity that we become champions of faith, not the other way around. After all, Jesus didn't promise us a rose garden, instead he promised that He would stand by us at all times, which is way better than any other promise: "If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you." (John 15:18-19, NIV)
Gideon wasn't prepared for the angel's response: "The LORD turned to him and said, 'Go in the strength you have and save Israel out of Midian's hand. Am I not sending you?'" (Judg 6:14, NIV2) In other words, Gideon was the answer to what he was complaining about!
When we have similar concerns as Gideon, may we always remember that just maybe, God is making us aware that we may be the answer!
Adversity can come to us in many ways, as we have already noticed when we flew to London (See Heathrow's Hunger Games. Facing Unimaginable Odds, Part 28a). Our trials, however, were far from over...
We arrived safely in Edinburgh with no visible incidents. When we approached the luggage belt, one of our suitcases was already there. Whew. But wait. Where was the other one? We waited...and waited...but our second suitcase never appeared. Naturally, it was the suitcase that contained all of our medicine, our battery chargers and our toiletries…
"Don't worry. We'll find it!" Said the one in charge of lost luggage. He guaranteed that it would be delivered within 2 days.
It was later discovered that the suitcase we now had in hand had remained in London. The second one, however, had gone on to Aberdeen, our missed destination. But where it went wasn't really the issues, was it. The issue was that two days later, we still had not obtained our suitcase.
Fortunately, our host lent us a phone charger so we had our phone back into service, which meant that we could call British Airways Lost Luggage Department on Sunday. No one answered, however, and the next day we were leaving for Portree. We called again the next morning, and we were told they could not do anything about our suitcase. We would have to call the courier…
Needless to say, it was another two days before our lost suitcase finally came into our possession. Finally we were back to normal. We had our long lost friend back in custody, all of our devices were fully charged, and my wife once again had her cancer medication. From now on, all medicine goes on board the plane!
Funny enough, when we rented our car in Edinburgh, we had been warned that there was no spare tire in our rental car. We were told that if we had a flat tire we should call for help. We had to tell the agent about our dead cell phone. She laughed and suggested that we send smoke signals…
Still our Father came through big time in our hour of need, as we will discover in our next devotional.
Have you lost your luggage? No worries. We will eventually find it some day! Guaranteed! At least I hope so!
The Illustrator: This daily newsletter is dedicated to encouraging everyone to look towards Jesus as the source of all the solutions to our problems. It contains a daily inspirational story, a Bible verse and encouraging messages. HTML and plain text versions available.
The Nugget: Published three times a week, this newsletter features inspirational devotionals and mini-sermons dedicated to drawing mankind closer to each other and to Christ.