Audio Readings August 18, 2015 20th Week in Ordinary Time

Judges 6:11-24

Psalm 85:9, 11-14
Matthew 19:23-30

The Lord is with you, O champion! (Judges 6:12)

Put yourself in Gideon’s sandals for a moment. As a child, you grew up with stories of God rescuing his people from oppression. Years later, you watched the nation of Midian overpower Israel, and your faith in God suffered a major blow. He doesn’t fight for us anymore, you thought. Then one day, a messenger from God shows up. He tells you to go save Israel, because the Lord is with you! Doubts begin to flood your mind, and instead of stepping forward, you turn your gaze backward. Where was God when … ?

What do you do when God nudges you forward? If you’re like most of us, you may find yourself contemplating the past instead of dreaming about the future. You may dwell on the times when it didn’t work out and forget all the times God was with you.

“I don’t know if anyone I’ve ever prayed for has been healed, so what’s the point?” “Peace with that person would be wonderful, but our relationship is beyond repair.” “I’ve never been able to overcome this habit; why should this time be any different?” “I don’t think they’ll ever come back to church, so there’s not much use in inviting them.”

Nevertheless, God is overflowing with patience and kindness toward us! He knows how quickly we can doubt. He also knows that we can be genuinely uncertain as to whether or not we’re hearing his voice correctly. That’s why he will sometimes confirm his message. He did this with Gideon, not just once, but three separate times!

What’s more, he assures us that as we step forward, he is going to be with us. The angel’s first words to Gideon were “The Lord is with you” (Judges 6:12). This ultimately allowed Gideon to turn his focus from his strength—small as it was—to God’s strength. Indeed, nothing is impossible for God. Eventually, of course, Gideon answered the Lord’s call, and God rescued his people again.

Today, when you sense God nudging you forward, don’t let your gaze shift backwards! Keep looking to him for confirmation and courage. Working with him step-by-step, there’s no limit to what he can accomplish through you.

“I can do anything through Christ who gives me strength!”~WAU


About gemdk

I am a cradle Catholic who made my first Holy Communion over 5o years ago at All Saints Catholic Church in Houston,TX in 1961. Went to Mass every Sunday as a child and teen and then young adult. Fell away for about 12 years in the late 80's, early 90's and then realized what was missing in my life was my Catholic upbringing and faith. Found my home at Sacred Heart in Crosby. Filling up the void I had for those 12 years in more ways than I can imagine, loving every minute of it. But this blog is not about me as much as it is for me and anyone who wants/needs to hear the word of God. I'm merely the instrument God uses to post the readings.
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