Sitting the Bench
I'm so glad you are here! I hope during your visit you get a glimpse of God's heart for we become what we are gazing at. I pray that God refreshes you and gives you readiness to persevere in what He has for you today. My desire is to be a blessing to you in helping you know God more and make Him known so I've made these Resources available to you and have the Missional Living blog tab for practical ideas of how to live on mission right where you are. If you are blogger come link up on Friday's for Brag on God Friday.
"Now the Ephraimites asked Gideon, 'Why have you treated us like this? Why didn't you call us when you went to fight Midian?' And they criticized him sharply. But he answered them, 'What have I accomplished compared to you? Aren't the gleanings of Ephraim's grapes better than the full grape harvest of Abiezer? God gave Oreb and Zeeb, the Midianite leaders, into your hands. What was I able to do compared to you?' At this, their resentment against him subsided." Judges 8:1-3
Sometimes other people get the opportunities you desire, even when your motives are good and you really desire to please the Lord, someone else just may get what you hope for. Have you been there? I have, just last night. And that makes these few verses a sweet little blessing.
The Lord didn't ask the Ephraimites to fight the Midianites, He asked Gideon and 300 others. Why? I mean really, why in the world would God not want (fill in the blank) ? The reason He didn't ask the Ephraimites was for His glory. Sometimes the most glory means sitting the bench. Yuck! Oh how I hated sitting the bench. I am a please give me a thousand things to do and I will thrive kind of person. Make me sit on the bench and my attitude goes down the tubes.
And ya know the crazy thing is that these guys got to play the last inning. They got to be part of the big come back, the big win but they forgot and just pointed the disappointed finger at Gideon as though it was his fault when really it was God who limited them. Sometimes victory can inflate our view of ourselves, something like, "Look how we won, why didn't you have us and all our incredibleness to begin with?"
So if the Lord chose someone else over you for a task, can you be content with that and keep pursuing Him and stewarding your gifts the best you know how in other ways?
And what a cool picture of how a gentle answer turns away wrath. The Ephraimites were unjustly criticizing Gideon and he responds with respect. Wow. Yet another fruit of being filled with the Holy Spirit, seeing fruit like patience, gentleness, love, peace, kindness...
Oh Lord, thank You for this glimpse that sometimes You just wont choose us for a task. Help us being willing to let go. Empower us to submit to You and all you have even when it just doesn't make sense. And Lord, give us Your ability to give gentle answers.
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1/18/2012 01:33:21 am
I really enjoyed this passage this morning. And, yes, I feel like I've been benched more than once. Currently, the year I was "supposed to" pursue life just beyond the care of little people (they're all school-age now), I get severely injured in a car accident and I am sitting on the side-lines. But, it is to God's glory and I've chosen to bless him from the bench. If that's where he wants me, he knows better. Thanks for this, Aly
1/18/2012 02:42:42 am
Hello Laura - this was great and you know what? I needed it. This is my first visit - saw you over at WFW and I'm glad I did - I'll be back!
1/18/2012 10:49:37 am
I so love your insight into the scriptures. Thanks so much for bringing them to us.
1/18/2012 11:07:11 pm
God has a deep-bench mentality. Learning how to sit on the bench for an amazing team teaches humility, unconditional love and how to cheer for the ones in the game. We all need that lesson!
5/17/2012 02:34:32 pm
Well here I am loosing more sleep over last night's baseball game. Once again my son sat the bench most of the time. The irony of this is that he has a God given talent as a heavy hitter. He has last years game ball on his night stand from when he hit two home runs in one game and actually split the leather on the ball. This year his new coach does not see his talent and he sits while others play, The few times that he has played he has done amazing things. He saved the game once in the outfield and drove in a tie breaking run in overtime.... but still he plays very little. I have asked God to show me a passage where someone of talent is benched. That is how I ended up here. Can you give a little more detail on the Bible Story itself. I am also going to read it on my own to get further insight. I think this might be the very thing I have prayed for. Thanks.
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