Steven Furtick - You've Got What It Takes To Win
This is an excerpt from: Instruments of Victory
So, you get in your head, and things die there, because you give the instrument of your mind to the Enemy. The Lord says, "If you are afraid…" Wait a minute. He just sent all of the men away who were trembling, but he's trembling too, and God knows it. God says, "You can tremble, but you can't turn back". It's okay for you to feel afraid. It's okay for you to feel those feelings of unworthiness, but you must not surrender to them. "For we have a Great High Priest who can sympathize with us. He was tempted in every way as we are, yet without sin".
It's okay to be tempted. Don't give in to it. It's okay to slip up. Get up. It's okay that you go off. Apologize, and taper it next time, for God's sake. You can tremble (that's the feeling), but you can't turn back. That's the commitment. If you want to see the victory, you will see it when you have felt the fear, when you have felt the discouragement, and you press through it, and you breathe through it. You loved through it, and you forgave through it, and he brought you through it, because it's his hand that gives the victory. It's his hand. You think he's running out of mercy? It's his hand. You think he gave you somebody else's gift on accident or didn't give you… You got everything, every little thing… I'm telling you, I believe in God, a sovereign God, a wonderful, masterful God, who hand-built this instrument. He made me weird where he made me weird.
I'm about to get weirder. Warning to all of the people who live with me. I'm about to get weirder. I did something the other day Holly never saw me do. I backed into a parking space. She said, "A back-in kind of guy all of a sudden, huh". I said, "Yeah. You don't even know me yet". You haven't even met me yet. I'll back in. I'll back out. I'll do this thing. Now watch. Can you truly say that you have put your life in God's hands or are you holding on to things that you think you need to know and trying to control things that are the sole dominion of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords? I saw it in the message. God said, "If you're afraid to go down to the camp, go down to the camp with Purah your servant". Verse 11 is so anointed. "And you shall hear what they say…"
Remember, God has been talking to Gideon for an entire chapter. "You're a mighty warrior. Go in the strength you have. I will use you. I will be with you. Okay. I'll light a rock on fire. I'll make the goat you brought out catch on fire. I'll help you build an altar. I'll help you smash altars". Gideon says, "Can I lay out a fleece and you make the fleece wet and the ground around it dry"? This is all in Judges, chapter 6. God is like, "Yeah, sure. I'll make the fleece wet and the ground around it dry to show you that if everything around you dries up, I'll still give you a spirit inside of you that'll make you ready for what I've called you to do". And then he does it. Then Gideon is like, "Okay. How about the other way? Can you make the fleece dry and everything around it wet"? God said, "Yeah, because when you feel dry, I'm going to put enough encouragement around you in seasons of your life where you can get by on somebody else's faith".
After God does all that, Gideon is still trembling…until the Lord says, "Okay". Verse 11: "Go there. Face what you fear". Say it out loud. "Face what you fear". "And you shall hear what they say, and afterward your hands shall be strengthened…" After you hear, not what God says, after you hear what the enemy says. I'm going to tell you something you've never had a preacher tell you before. Sometimes you need to listen to your enemy. They're going to come take our Baptist papers away after this sermon, for sure. "Pastor, I've heard you preach a lot of sermons, but you're always telling me not to do that". No, no, no. He said, "Go down and hear what the enemy is saying about you, and when you hear what the enemy says… If you don't believe what God says about you, maybe you'll believe what the enemy says about you".
Which raises a question. If you're worthless, why is the Devil fighting you so hard? Think about that. The Enemy is not infinite. Only God is infinite. He only has so much artillery. So, if it has been coming against your mind lately, and it has been coming against your marriage lately, and it has been coming against your bloodline lately, and it has been coming against your heart lately, what does your Enemy believe about you that you don't believe about you? He must believe that you are a very valuable instrument. That's why you've been having shortness of breath, panic attacks, and you can barely get through the day. The Devil knows if you keep breathing much longer… There is a breakthrough with your name on it. You are so close. Just about the time… Look at God. Look at how sovereign he is. Look at how he put you here at this time for this message. Look at how he gave you this word for when you needed it.
"I've got what it takes to win". How did Gideon know? Because the moment he got to the camp… Give me verse 12. This is so good. "And the Midianites and the Amalekites and all the people of the East lay along the valley…" They're in abundance. The enemy is in abundance, and Gideon's strengths are few. I know you feel that way, but listen to the enemy. In verse 13, he says, "Dude, I had a dream last night. It was kind of weird. You're not going to believe me, but…" "Behold, I dreamed a dream, and behold, a cake of barley bread tumbled into the camp of Midian and came to the tent and struck it so that it fell and turned it upside down, so that the tent lay flat". "Is that the whole dream"?
You know when people try to tell you their dreams, and you're like, "I'm sure this was interesting when you were asleep, but this is really… Can you speed this along"? "And then I was wearing glasses, but they weren't glasses; they were headphones. But then they were AirPods, and then the left one died. What do you think that means"? "I saw some bread roll through the camp, and it smashed everything". Give me verse 14. Look at what his friend says back. This is the weird part. You haven't even heard the weird part yet. "And his comrade answered, 'This is no other than the sword of Gideon the son of Joash, a man of Israel; God has given into his hand Midian and all the camp.'"
You got all that from a loaf of bread? Barley bread no less. That's the cheap bread. That's the moldy bread. Something snapped in Gideon when he heard that. Look at verse 15. "As soon as Gideon heard the telling of the dream and its interpretation, he worshiped". What do you do when you worship? You throw your hands up. What did God say he had given Gideon? The victory. Where did he tell him he put it? In his hands. So, he put those instruments of victory up in the air and realized, "The hand of Midian is strong, but the hand of God is greater". "And he returned to the camp…"
Who is this word for? This thing has been burning a hole in me. I can't even move right now. I'm glued to the floor until I finish this. Gideon went back down, not from what he heard from God, what he heard from his enemies. He realized, "If they are that intimidated by me, then God must…" If they're dreaming about me… If the Devil is waking me up in the middle of the night, it must be a sword. He said to his men, "Arise, for the Lord has given the host of Midian into your hand".
I want to ask you something. If a barley bread loaf can be a weapon to destroy an army that's as abundant as a swarm of locusts… How fast does the barley have to be moving to knock down a whole camp? Now you get it. It wasn't about the weapon; it was about the wind. That's why, child of God, you can hold your head high when you leave this church today. You can know, "Oh, I'm a weapon. He's the wind". When the angel said, "Mighty warrior," Gideon said, "Who, me"? When the enemy said, "Moldy bread," Gideon was like, "Oh, that's me".
Sometimes what you need to believe isn't how much you know. You don't need more information; you need more belief in God. It was an amazing thing for the Enemy to see something as common as you rolling at him. It's picking up momentum now. Gideon said, "All right. Now that I've let go of my excuses, let's go". Let go to let's go. "That looks like bread coming. Oh no. I just saw whose hands were behind it. O God, I know what happens when you put it in the Master's hands". Ask the 5,000 what happens when you get the bread in the right hands.