Morning Musings: Judges 14:4

“His father and mother did not know that it was from the Lord, for he was seeking an opportunity against the Philistines.  At that time the Philistines ruled over Israel.”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

Certainly God can help us by working with or even through us.  But did you know that He can help us and the people around us by working in spite of us?  He can use our character flaws and failings to His glory.

Now, on the one hand, this is really good news.  Even when we are at our worst, we don’t pose any threat to the plans of God.  Our brokenness can become His opportunity.  Our failure can become His fortune.

On the other hand, we don’t want to find ourselves in this place.  Of all of the judges described in this narrative, Samson is the worst.  His character is almost totally nonexistent.  Or at least it’s essentially the opposite of what it should be at every point.  He is selfish, prideful, impatient, sensuous, rude, inconsiderate, disobedient, disrespectful, and the list goes on.  Nothing about him qualifies him for being a leader of Israel save God’s choosing.  And yet God still uses Him.

I think the real moral of the story here is twofold.  First, we need to not limit God in terms of our expectations.  He really can work through anybody to accomplish His plans.  No matter how knotted up our lives get, He can still do His thing.  Second, we need to not follow in the example of Samson at any point.  Let’s have God work through us, not around or in spite of us.

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