And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor!” Gideon said to Him, “O My lord, if the Lord is with us, why then has all this happened to us? And where are all His miracles which our fathers told us about, saying, ‘Did not the Lord bring us up from Egypt?’ But now the Lord has forsaken us and delivered us into the hands of the Midianites.”
If there is one thing we have all learned from disappointment and painful circumstances, it is that they can steal our peace. If we are honest, haven’t we all experienced some of Gideon’s attitude when we have faced heart-wrenching circumstances or things haven’t gone the way we wished?
Through many years, I’ve learned that it’s not always the best thing to seek comfort from someone else. In the past, I have called a friend or tried to do something that would calm my fears. But trying to find an emotional peace from others or in something that I do, never offers a lasting peace.
Jesus has given us lasting peace with God. But there is a requirement. For God’s peace to be greater than our fears, we must allow His peace to rule in our hearts (Colossians 3:15). Something will always be greater in our hearts. We will always hold something more precious. The peace Jesus has given us is precious. He paid for it with His life. And His peace is powerful. He rose from death to empower it within us.
“When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his goods are in peace” (Luke 11:21).
Are we fully armed in the power of Jesus Christ? Are we guarding ourselves against the power of our circumstances and our feelings to manipulate us? If we are standing strong in the gift of our righteousness in Jesus, we are at peace. God gave us free will and will never supersede how we choose to respond to Him and His Word. We always choose to arm ourselves and exercise the peace that is ours in Christ.
Right before Gideon practically accused God of turning them over to the Midianites, God called Gideon a mighty man of valor (Judges 6:12). A man of valor is a man of courage. How did Gideon exercise His free will? Although God’s Word to Gideon about being a mighty man of courage should have strengthened his heart, God’s Word didn’t make a difference. God’s encouragement went in one ear and out the other. The Lord then gave Gideon instructions on how to rescue Israel, but Gideon was blinded by what He saw in the natural. What did Gideon do after God had encouraged him and given him instruction? Gideon went on to remind himself of his own inadequacies (Judges 6:15).
We are human like Gideon. We are sometimes quick to not hear God encouraging us. We are sometimes quick to repeat our own inadequacies.
God is constantly reminding us of our victories in Jesus. He is constantly reminding us of who He is in our lives. The enemy is also continually trying to steal our peace from us. He continually reminds us of our inadequacies. He lures us to walk in fear, doubt, and worry. It is our free will to listen to whom we choose.
This life has plenty of difficulties to overwhelm us. There is always something or someone trying to upset us. But there is always God calling us His mighty person of courage and giving us instruction on how to overcome. If you know God as your peace, as your Jehovah Shalom, you will have the courage to face dire situations and declare that nothing is impossible with your God.
You are a child of God, and God has given you His power. God doesn’t deliver you into the hands of destruction. He has delivered you into the kingdom of His Son (Colossians 1:13). He calls you a mighty person of courage! You don’t have to be ruled by any chaos around you. You don’t have to bear the weight of battle! Jesus has declared your victory! He has given you instructions in His Word on how to stand strong. You have no power of your own, but you stand in the power of your relationship with God. You are at peace in your relationship with God. You fight with the peace that is yours in Jesus Christ.
Have you realized that the God of peace, your Jehovah Shalom, has rescued your fearful heart?