For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.
Romans 12:3 ESV
Thinking of the character of Gideon as I march through the book of Judges has encouraged me to do some introspection.
I find it curious that God describes him as a “mighty man of valour” when he comes across as a bit of a cynical coward really.
With me I suspect I come across like Paul described himself at one point- impressive in his letters but rather underwhelming in person.
I don’t think Gideon was a writer but I get the impression that in the ancient Israelite equivalent of the pub he was full of bravado, but deep down he was full of insecurities.
To be honest, when I reflect on my evangelistic endeavours, I feel like my current feeble efforts are nothing compared to past victories, and even those were no doubt tarnished by the kind of prayerlessness of another of the judges, Samson.
If people looking on at my writing and my church persona think I’m an exemplary Christian, then they couldn’t be more wrong! Of course, the standard is Christ and His perfection, but by most standards I fall woefully short. Thankfully, my justification is in Christ and not in my works, otherwise I’d be hopeless!
It’s interesting that Paul calls us not just to sober judgement, but also to do so in accordance with the measure of faith we have. This isn’t about character assassination, inverted pride or false humility. Yes, we’re to be serious about our flaws, brokenness and indeed sinfulness.
But with faith we’re then to look to Christ who’s saved us, and say that with Him, nothing is impossible.
God can take our brokenness and make something beautiful. If He can mould a lump of clay into a man, and make a women out of a rib, He can work with our unpromising material to produce something for His pleasure and glory. Even so, may it be, Lord Jesus!