One of my favorite themes throughout the book of Judges is God using “unlikely” people. How often do we wonder if God can use me? So often we think we are unlikely- sure we know deep down God can use anyone but expect Him to pick someone more qualified or able. But I have a surprise for you- we serve a God that takes great pleasure in choosing the unlikely one. In taking what most would perceive as not enough and then pouring Himself into His chosen vessel until it becomes enough.
It’s here in the pages of Judges we meet Ehud, the writer identifies him as a left-handed man from the tribe of Benjamin. “Left-handed man” is translated from a Hebrew idiom which means ” a man bound/restricted in his right hand”.
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Ehud Was The Perfect Candidate Because He Was Different
Many fortresses were set up so that a right-handed man would be unable to pull his sword (it would be on the left), this left them at a disadvantage, leaving those protecting the fortress with the upper hand. For whatever reason, the guards didn’t discover the sword on Ehud‘s right side -in the more unlikely place- and allowed him into the fortress.
Because Ehud was an “unlikely” person, God used him to accomplish something no one else could – get in to see the king with a weapon. I wonder, did he ever wonder can God use me? Did doubt ever whisper in his ear all the reasons why God couldn’t use him? Perhaps I find so much in this story because that voice is all too familiar. It comes to whisper time after time in my own ear, to tell me I’m not good enough…
That I’m a failure.
That nothing I do is good enough.
That I’m not enough, I’m too small, too insignificant to be used.
God Can Use Me Even When I Feel Insignificant
The book of Judges never tells us if Ehud ever felt insignificant, or if he questioned can God use me, but scripture is filled with other cases. Over and over again God draws the most unlikely people, people who felt insignificant to the center stage in a role they never could have imagined for themselves. Despite doubts, shortcomings, their insignificance, and their pasts.
Ehud is far from the last “unlikely” we meet in scripture, the very next judge we meet is another one. In the book of Judges verse 31, we meet Shamgar, we aren’t told much about his story – only that he killed 600 Philistines with an Ox Goad and delivered the Israelites.
Trusting That God Can Use Me
Stop underestimating what the Lord plans to do with your life, your disqualifications, inabilities, and unlikeliness were not accidents- but purposefully woven together before the beginning of time and set into place for God to use at just the right moment. Those things you think keep God from using you, are the very things that are going to proclaim God’s strength and goodness the most. Your unlikeliness is the very platform that will show the world how big your God is.
Can He use me is a question many of us are afraid to ask, perhaps we’re afraid of the answer? Afraid to hope that maybe just maybe He can turn our mess into a message. It’s time to stop putting God in a box and let Him loose in our lives to unleash the plan that was destined for us since before we were born. Often we are so quick to sell His plan for our life short because of how we feel. Feelings aren’t always accurate, and yet we let them run our lives and control whether we believe if God can use us or not.
Read more of Judges series here.
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