The Goodwill of God
It's amazing to think that even after the Angel of the Lord had appeared to Gideon and told him plainly about God's goodwill toward him, Gideon was slow to believe it.
And Gideon said to him, O sir, if the Lord is with us, why is all this befallen us? And where are all His wondrous works of which our fathers told us, saying, Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt? But now the Lord has forsaken us and given us into the hand of Midian. The Lord turned to him and said, Go in this your might, and you shall save Israel from the hand of Midian. Have I not sent you? Gideon said to Him, Oh Lord, how can I deliver Israel? Behold, my clan is the poorest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father's house.
Just as Gideon did, many people struggle with feelings of inferiority. They may have been abused or rejected and as a result have low self-esteem and little self-worth. They may say to themselves, 'But I did not come from a wealthy family.' 'I do not have a good education.' 'I'm not smart enough.' 'I was abused.' 'I do not have any talents or abilities.' 'I could never succeed.'
God is for you not against you. He was willing to give His own son for you!
When Gideon looked in the mirror, all he could see were disadvantages and shortcomings. He doubted that he was capable of greatness and was not convinced the Lord had picked the right man for the job. But the Lord knew exactly what Gideon needed to hear, and He spoke words that went right to the heart of Gideon's inadequacy: 'The Lord said to him, Surely I will be with you' (Judg. 6:16, AMP).
These must be the most comforting words in the entire world. To know that God is with you and that He is for you'”this is the ultimate assurance. These were the words Gideon needed to hear, and these are also the words you need to hear deep within your spirit as you begin this journey of discovering God's will for your life. Jesus knew you would need to hear them, and this is why He said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you' (Heb. 13:5, NKJV) and again in Matthew 28:20, 'Lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age' (NKJV).
Romans 8:31'”32 says, 'What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?' (NKJV). God is for you and not against you! Do you need evidence? In this passage of Scripture Paul points to the cross as the ultimate proof of God's goodwill toward us. If God was willing to give His own Son for us, how much more can we trust that He will gladly and generously give us anything and everything we need?
Turning ashes into beauty is not an auxiliary benefit of the Christian experience; it is the heart of the Gospel, and it is God's will for you!
Do you feel like a failure? Does the past haunt you and define you? Do you have a difficult time believing God is on your side and has your best interests in mind? It's time for you to get a revelation of the goodness of God. He is not looking for perfect people, and He is not intimidated by your past. He desires 'to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified' (Isa. 61:3, NKJV).
Paul wrote about this same truth in Romans 8:28 when he said, 'And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose' (NKJV). When we understand this reality and it becomes part of the fabric of who we are, then we will begin to view every circumstance, both positive and negative, as a situation God can put to work for our good and the furtherance of His purposes. Salvation, atonement, forgiveness, justification, regeneration, redemption, reconciliation'” these are all words used to describe what God desires to do in our lives. Turning ashes into beauty is not an auxiliary benefit of the Christian experience; it is the heart of the Gospel, and it is God's will for you!
Jeremiah 29:11 says, 'For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope' (NKJV). Does God have a plan for your life? The answer is a resounding yes! But it's even better than that. Not only does God have a plan, but He also has a good plan that is 'exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think' (Eph. 3:20, NKJV). And with that confidence, we can begin our journey, 'looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith' (Heb. 12:2, NKJV), knowing that 'He who has begun a good work in you will complete it' (Phil. 1:6, NKJV).
God has a plan for everyone.
Do you know yours?
This Bible Study has been taken from Chapter 1 of Daniel Kolenda's book, LIVE BEFORE YOU DIE, which is not only a 'wake up call' for you but also offers practical and scriptural insights on how you can discover and fulfil God's will for your life.