“You make me brave” by Bethel Music was blasting on the radio.
My brother said, “I’ve never heard that song before.”
“Sure you have---in fact, it’s the theme of the conference where I’m a speaker this Fall.” I replied.
“Really? Bravery is the theme and they asked YOU to speak?!?!?!” he said with snarky sarcasm.
Ouch!!!! That hurt!!!
But honestly, I can see where he’s coming from.
Truth is that I’m not exactly known for my bravery. No, I tend more toward being a chicken.
That’s probably one of the reasons that I was so surprised when the Holy Spirit recently challenged me with the words, “But what if I want you to be a Deborah?”
Truth is that Deborah has never really been one of my favorite women in the Bible. Being raised in a feminist-challenged culture, I’ve always wondered why God chose Deborah to even be a judge. Weren’t there any men to take the job? I’m pretty sure if God would have called me in the book of Judges to be the people’s leader, I would have struggled for some time in prayer with the question, “Is this allowed? You know I’m a girl?” (Just keeping it real here ladies.)
If I’d have been in Deborah’s position when the leader of the army said he’d only obey God’s command if I went to battle with him, I’m sure there would have been members of the army who whispered to themselves, “That’s it, we’re all gonna die” while I went to throw up.
Thankfully, Deborah did not do that.
Instead, she rose to the occasion with bravery and said:
“Of course I’ll go with you. But understand that with an attitude like that, there’ll be no glory in it for you. God will use a woman’s hand to take care of Sisera.”
Deborah got ready and went with Barak to Kedesh. Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali together at Kedesh. Ten companies of men followed him. And Deborah was with him.”
Now there’s a woman who should teach about bravery!
As we continue to read the story, we see that under Deborah’s leadership, God helped His people win the battle.
Deborah said to Barak, “Charge! This very day God has given you victory over Sisera. Isn’t God marching before you?”
Barak charged down the slopes of Mount Tabor, his ten companies following him.
God routed Sisera—all those chariots, all those troops!—before Barak. Sisera jumped out of his chariot and ran. Barak chased the chariots and troops all the way to Harosheth Haggoyim. Sisera’s entire fighting force was killed—not one man left.
Now there’s a Princess Warrior---a woman of God who rose to the occasion faced the battle and allowed God to work through her to accomplish His task.
Hmmmm….that’s an interesting description.
She allowed God to work through her to accomplish God’s work.
That’s what it means to be brave??!!??
Yes, dear friends, that is what the Holy Spirit is showing me.
You see, I think that one of the reasons that I (and others like me) often fear the call to follow the example of Deborah is that we look at ourselves and think, “I can’t do that, be that, try that.”
And in yourself, there’s the very real possibility that you can’t. However, when you are obeying God’s call to fulfill His purpose, He works through you to do amazing---almost miraculous---things.
Literally, HE MAKES YOU BRAVE.
The secret to being a Princess Warrior like Deborah is found in Zechariah 4:6:
‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.
How do we know this is the secret to Deborah’s strength?
Read Judges 5 and see that she gives all the glory to God. Notice that she gives ALL of the credit to God for winning the battle and setting the people free.
The truth is that on our own we probably can’t do much---but through the Holy Spirit we can do great things.
We can be brave and follow God wherever He leads when we grasp the truth that He is the One Who chose us, He is fighting the battle for us, and the victory belongs to Him.
When we realize the battle belongs to the Lord, we, too, can be mighty Warriors like Deborah.
Thoughts to Ponder:
Has God called you to a position that you feel inadequate to accept?
What is keeping you from answering God’s call?
Are you afraid that God won’t come through for you like He did for Deborah?
How does God want to make you brave?
What if you are the Deborah God wants to use to you to bring miraculous changes to your family, your workplace, your community, or the world?
Will you answer His draft call?