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Sunday, April 26, 2015

NOT BY MIGHT

by Cynthia Ruchti

I've been on a hunt. An unsuccessful hunt. I thought I might find someone who had enough time, enough resources, enough ingenuity, strength, knowledge, and skill to accomplish the difficult task they'd been assigned by God.

Searched the people around me. People on the other side of the globe. People from the Bible.

All of them, underdogs. All too small, ill-prepared, underfunded, overworked, or the-least-likely.   



Millenia-worth of God-followers accomplished their tasks despite insufficient resources and inadequate time or strength.

How? And why would that pattern repeat itself so regularly through history?

David, the under-appreciated shepherd boy standing before a fully armed and armored giant, Goliath, an accomplished and formidable warrior. Goliath held a spear bigger around than David's skinny arms, no doubt. But add God to the equation and Goliath toppled like a pile of children's blocks.

Gideon, the draft-dodger who was drafted anyway, as insecure as they come. His army was immeasurable outnumbered, but victorious because they threw themselves on the mercy of God and chose to obey His specific, curious orders.

Joseph started life in Egypt as a slave with no rights, no possessions, no resources, and ended up second in command to Pharaoh. Joseph became a powerful leader who was instrumental in rescuing the entire nation of Israel from famine and destruction. Not by might. Not by power. But by the Spirit of the God he served.

When we feel overwhelmed by the circumstances facing us, we can imagine God is thinking, "Great! Those are the kinds of odds I like best! Now, get out of the way and watch Me work."

It's an offense to Him if human cleverness and talent is credited for the victories in our lives. Everything good that we are and have and do is because of Him.

In Isaiah 26:12 ESV, God's people said, "All we have accomplished, Lord, is really from You." In the Common English Bible, it's expressed this way: "All that we have done has been your doing."

Feeling a little underdog-ish? Overwhelmed? Outnumbered? Under-resourced?

Here's a holding-on-for-dear-life verse to encourage you that you're in a good place, a God place.

Zechariah 4:6-7 AMP, revised--"'Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit,' says the Lord of hosts For who are you, O great mountain of human obstacles?…You shall become a mere molehill!"


3 comments:

Ane Mulligan said...

Oh, how this spoke to my heart! God used my husband to voice His call to me to write novels, and my heart quickened when Hubs voiced it.

But my first thought was I knew nothing about doing that. Sure, I was a voracious reader, but I'd never "studied" how they did it.

But God filled my head with a story, and gifted me with storytelling, but there was some assembly required. And He connected me with my critique partners, who taught me how to assemble a novel.

I love relying on Him for my stories. And I love the people He's brought along side me to help. And you're one of those, Cynthia. Thanks for this!

Julie Lessman said...

BEAUTIFUL POST, CYNTHIA!! One of the best I've read on this subject, so THANK YOU for the encouragement ... oh, and THANK GOD for it too ... ;)

Hugs,
Julie

Carrie Lynn Lewis said...

Cynthia,

The others are right. This is a good post.

One of our human failings is the belief that we must be properly trained and equipped for whatever task we're given, when Biblical records prove beyond all shadow of doubt that God is most effective through our weaknesses, limitations, and inadequacies.