I have been reading the book of Judges lately. It's an interesting book with lots of different judges coming in and out over a period of time in Israel's history.
I have always loved the story of Gideon found in Judges 6:11-8:28. I like how God called him to rescue the Israelites. (Judges 6:14)
Gideon, hard man to convince, kept asking for a sign. He wasn't convinced by one sign, asked for another and another. He also showed fear at least twice. Once when tearing down an altar and once when preparing to send the 300 against the Midianites and Amalekites. Now granted, I would swallow hard as well if I saw my troops reduced from 22,000 to 300! I might have a "huh what?" moment myself.
However God delivered used those 300, and a mass of confusion among the Midianites and Amalekites, to set the Israelites free.
It's and awesome story and I encourage you to read it. Go ahead I'll wait.....
.........still waiting.........(non-scientific studies show most won't go and read this Scripture right now).....
.....OK good.......you're back......now here is what stood out to me this time:
Judges 8:25-26 talks about how Gideon took about 40 pounds of gold as a reward from the Israelites. Then it says in v.27 "Then Gideon used the gold to make an idol and placed it in his hometown, Ophrah. All Israel chased after it there as though it were a prostitute. It became a trap for Gideon and his family."
Asking for the gold was not a sin. However what he did next was and it became a stumbling block for Gideon, his family and Israel!
I read this and realized how easy it is for anyone to fall if they are not on guard. Gideon was not on guard and let a good thing turn into a stumbling block. When we, as believers, have a moment of spiritual victory, or a high point where are faith is on fire, that is when we need to be on particular guard.
The enemy knows that when things are going well we tend to coast. Take it easy when life is going good. This is true as well for ministers and front-line workers who have a season of blessed ministry activity.
However this is the time to WATCH! Stand on guard and make sure the enemy does not sneak up unawares! When life is good we should dig into the Word and stay close to the Father, just as we would when life is not so good! When we stay sheltered in the Arms of the Most High we are in the safest place imaginable.