Uncage the Bird
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Currently I am writing my way through Judges sharing glimpses of God's heart and character for a weekday devotional. To check out the entire series so far head on over the the Judges Devotional. And if you are a blogger, come on over on Friday's for a blog hop.
"The Philistines went up and camped in Judah, spreading out near Lehi. The men of Judah asked, “Why have you come to fight us?” “We have come to take Samson prisoner,” they answered, “to do to him as he did to us.” Then three thousand men from Judah went down to the cave in the rock of Etam and said to Samson, “Don’t you realize that the Philistines are rulers over us? What have you done to us?” He answered, “I merely did to them what they did to me.” They said to him, “We’ve come to tie you up and hand you over to the Philistines.” Samson said, “Swear to me that you won’t kill me yourselves.” “Agreed,” they answered. “We will only tie you up and hand you over to them. We will not kill you.” So they bound him with two new ropes and led him up from the rock." Judges 15:9-13
Have you ever felt like a caged bird? Like you were capable of so much more than what you were given to steward at the moment? I have. Most of my growing up years I looked very very young. Most people think that is a good thing, but let me tell you when it's assumed you should pay the child fee at a swimming pool when you're in college it's just plain embarrassing. Or when you coach junior high volleyball and are mistaken for one of the girls when you are in college, let's just say you don't feel very respected. When people think you're twelve, they treat you like your twelve. I felt disregarded and overlooked till I was in my thirties. I know the caged bird feel.
So I feel like I can relate to Samson, but I bet his experience went much deeper than mine. He has this awesome call on his life and the skill to match but is completely disregarded. Nobody wanted what he had to offer. Ever been there?
In fact, the people who should have been pushing him to greatness were the very ones holding him back for their own selfish desire to stay in bondage. How crazy is it that the only time during Samson's time as a judge an army was formed, it was to attack him. Whoa! And if Samson defended himself, he would have had to fight the very people he was suppose to be leading.
And have you noticed when we are caged it is so easy to become self-focused and loose track of reality of why we exist, for God's pleasure rather than our own.
And let's turn this on it's head. I imagine lots of us relate to Samson being stifled instead of empowered. But I think a lot of us also relate to the Israelites and just haven't realized it. Perhaps there is someone in your life you're holding back from functioning and doing what God built them to do.
Or even a step further, who in your life are you seeing as a Samson, a young person with a calling on their life they just need a little love and guidance. They need to be called to greatness, to use their gifts and strengths for the glory of God rather than personal pleasure.
Lord, we don't want to be like the stiflers. Please show us the people in our life who we can encourage, affirm and give opportunity for them to fly. And Lord, thank You for uncaging us, for giving us opportunities in Your time. Help us pursue and walk forward to be good investors of the abilities You've given us, and not waste or horde them. And we trust Your word when You say that if we are faithful with a little You will give us much more.
And will you pray for us? Because this is happening Thursday. And check out Failure, Wisdom and the Glory of God.
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I'm linked with Some Girls Website, A Holy Experience
3/14/2012 02:57:35 pm
The theme of this post really reminds me of how Nehemiah was determined to build the wall, despite all the naysayers. -- I think sometimes, we let opposition detract us from God's purpose when it's actually a sign that we are on the right path. If there were no opposition, then we should worry... :)
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