Week 4 of Judges – Change of Focus


Judges 6:11-16 – Change of Focus

(11) And there came an angel of the LORD, and sat under an oak which was in Ophrah, that pertained unto Joash the Abiezrite: and his son Gideon threshed wheat by the winepress, to hide it from the Midianites.
(12) And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him, and said unto him, The LORD is with thee, thou mighty man of valour.
(13) And Gideon said unto him, Oh my Lord, if the LORD be with us, why then is all this befallen us? and where be all his miracles which our fathers told us of, saying, Did not the LORD bring us up from Egypt? but now the LORD hath forsaken us, and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.
(14) And the LORD looked upon him, and said, Go in this thy might, and thou shalt save Israel from the hand of the Midianites: have not I sent thee?
(15) And he said unto him, Oh my Lord, wherewith shall I save Israel? behold, my family is poor in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.
(16) And the LORD said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man.

 

Sometimes… a lot of times… we need a change of focus. God came to Gideon and told Him that the Lord was with him and that God was going to rescue Israel through him. Gideon, however had a serious problem. His mind was on everything EXCEPT God. He starts off by looking at the problem. He thought that there was no way that God could be with Israel given how it seemed as if God had forsaken Israel. However, it was not God who left Israel, but Israel. It works that way in our lives, too. When we feel as if God has left us, it tends to be us who have gone wandering away from Him. What we do is that we start looking at the problem, and not the Solution. Just like when Peter walked on water, he only sank when he took his eyes of Jesus (pretty cool, huh?). It’s way to easy to look at our situation and say that things are too far gone. Maybe there’s something that you think you messed up way to o bad for God to use you, or that someone else messed up too badly. Well, it’s not true, no situation is too big for God to handle.

Gideon also had a second issue. He started looking to himself. Really, it’s the same problem as looking at his situation, he was not thinking about what God could do, only what he could do (which apparently was not a lot). What I love about this story is that Gideon was really a nobody. He was from a poor family and not even that important in his family. God, however, sees right through that! God does not care who someone is, what their background is, or even who their family is. God cares about what someone is. Gideon, as we will see, proves to be a willing leader, and God will use him in a great way! First, however, Gideon will need to get his focus off his limitations and onto God’s power.

Gideon’s problem was a wrong focus. He looked at everything that wasn’t God when God gave him an opportunity to do something great. Don’t worry about your situation, God can use you whatever your surroundings may be. Don’t worry about your limitations, God doesn’t have any, so He will find a solution. Focus on God!

Life Step: Think about it…

What are some situations that might prevent you from focusing on God? Ask God to use those situations for His glory!

What are some limitations you may have that could take your focus off God and onto yourself?

How has God worked in or through you in spite of your limitations?

How can we turn our focus back to God?

3 thoughts on “Week 4 of Judges – Change of Focus

  1. Laura

    I think in the culture we live in we are surrounded by countless ways to lose focus on the Lord. TV, electronic devices, phones, texting, the business of being “busy”, etc. I definitely fall prey to some of these distractions. I think the main point that I take from this is we need to be purposeful in our focus. It needs to become a habit. It generally takes three weeks to make or break a habit, so I think if we could just make it a point to train ourselves to keep the focus we would find faithfulness automatically. I have lots of limitations for sure. I can easily get over whelmed with the daily grind. I can say in times past, when I have put God first and really listened times were easier for me and I was less stressed. Knowing that, I get mad at myself when I take my focus off of God, and then I wonder why things are so difficult or why I don’t respond to situations like I should. Like the Israelites, I make the same mistakes. It is really not that hard to relate to them if you really think about it.

  2. Alexis

    I heard this quote once “If you feel far from God, guess who moved?.” and that’s so true. God never moves closer or farther away from us, He’s always right there. We’re the ones that move. Sometimes I’ll feel like I’m not very close to God, well that’s my fault.
    We just finished the series in youth group Fake I.D., and the first week we learned about seeing ourselves as God does. I think this kinda goes along with what we’re talking about today. It’s easy to think we can’t serve God because of certain reasons (like we’re not popular, not old enough, etc.) but God doesn’t see us that way. When God sees us individually, He sees the gifts we have and what we CAN do, not what we can’t. A shift of focus from how we see ourselves to how God sees us could make a huge difference!

  3. Graciee lou

    With the world we live in it isn’t too hard to get distracted. There is homework, friends, texting, movies, music, computers, videogames….so much more. It can be pretty easy to get wrapped up in things and be ‘too busy’ for God. In reality, God is more important than all of those things so our focus should be on Him. I am not really sure what you mean by limitations, but there are many things that get me off track….like a new hobby or even laziness, for instance. God should always be my first choice, though. Awhile back we did a time managing series and I definitely need to rearrange my schedule with God on the headlines. He isn’t as much of the focus as He should be in my life. When i’m listening to Him He is always using me in little ways, but to be in that place again I need to quiet the chaos all around me so i can hear Him whispering in my ear.

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