Eso…This is for you.
The gnarled arms of the Oak tree rose to the skies with majestic aplomb. With a tangled mesh of limbs, its roots sprawled and snaked across the farm yard of Joash the Abiezrite. Blocking out the joyful rays of the sun, leaves created a shade of light and shadows. An angel sat under the woody magnificence, watching with cherubic patience.
The young man being observed worked on obliviously, incongruously threshing wheat by hand in a wine press. He went about his work with fearful quietude, often times looking over his shoulder with the lines of anxiety etched boldly on his tired face.
The enemies that made him tremble, had laid waste to the whole land with the ravaging capacity of a horde of locusts. With wanton destruction they had stripped bare the whole countryside, so much so his people hid in caves and dens.
The angel looked on bemused. The young man in hiding was so out of place. The whole scenario did not fit in just as wheat does not belong in a wine-press.
As he kept gazing, the scrawny Hebrew youth seemed to transform in size and dressing. He assumed a big stature with huge, bulging, rippling muscles and his threshing instrument became a mighty sword. He could not understand why the warrior he was looking at was hiding in a wine press. The transformation could not be sustained for long, in no time he had changed back to his cowardly form. Bemusement changed into a brief cloud of melancholy and darkened the face of the angelic being. Incredibly there was a huge divide between how heaven saw humans and how they saw themselves. The Hebrew lad was living below his potential. He was more than this!!! A man who should be routing enemies was threshing wheat. A leader of tribes was hiding, a coward.
The angel got tired of the monotonous metronome of Gideon’s threshing instrument, and rose up to the mission for which he came. His assignment was that of re-orientation and encouragement. The young man was definitely more than who he was and would die a nonentity if there was no divine intervention. Furthermore, the fate of his people would be in the balance if Gideon remained as he was.
The angel knew that the heart of the matter was a matter of the heart. Knowing the scriptures by heart, he knew that a man is as he thinks in his heart. For his duty to be accomplished, there had to be a redefinition. This would bridge the gap between who Gideon really was and the timid mouse he had been.
The messenger cut to the chase with his intro. “The Lord is with you, mighty warrior,” he said.
Gideon was stunned at the greeting that made no sense. He was in hiding from ferocious enemies, his family was the poorest of the clan and he was the runt of his household. Things had gone from bad to worse and here someone was telling him the Lord is with him. He nearly laughed at the sheer ridiculousness of it all.
The angel persisted in his work of conviction. He knew if he could get Gideon to see things from a heavenly perspective, then his work would become easy.
“The fact that things are going wrongly does not mean God is not with you.” He continued without paying mind to Gideon’s negative excuses. “Remember Joseph, your patriarch, it was recorded that God was with him in prison, yet he was a prosperous man. Stop building your life on what you can visualize but the unseen realities of heaven. Acknowledge the presence of God! Begin to see yourself the way God sees you. See what you can be and not who you are. Consider not the limitations or the strength of they that contend against you. Focus on the words heaven has spoken about you and believe!”
As he spoke, Gideon began to accept the words of change. A tiny trickle of faith sprung out of the rocky foundations of his negative mindset. A warrior began to emerge from the larvae of the man’s cowardice. As the angel disappeared following his mission, a smile lit up his face. Heaven had impacted earth again with the power of transformation. A warrior had been born…
…..GO IN THIS THY MIGHT….
The story of Gideon is in Judges 6.
Images from Google.
2014 Ekpo Ezechinyere