“So Gideon took ten men from among his servants and did as the Lord had said to him. But because he feared his father’s household and the men of the city too much to do it by day, he did it at night.”
I tend to latch onto “he did it at night” and think coward.
But here’s a consideration I’ve never chewed on: Gideon ALSO “did as the Lord had said to him.”
He was afraid, but HE OBEYED. It’s not like it was an anonymous act. Everyone knew who had torn down the altars by morning. Gideon knew he’d still get the flack. Yes, he could have obeyed during the day, and been a marvelous spectacle, and You would have helped him. But it’s significant still that he obeyed. Also…he chose a time he wouldn’t be interrupted and wouldn’t face interference, perhaps so that he knew he could obey and finish…
…and also because he was afraid.
We all aspire to act without fear. But down here in reality, I think it is a very good thing when we are afraid and we still choose to do what You say. Many never venture there.
May you take me past this…to where I see the danger, and I fear YOU; I do not fear it. But in the meantime, teach me to be obedient because I fear you MORE than I fear it.
Teach me to obey even while afraid, and in that, to learn that I didn’t have to be.