Filling the Gaps
Judges 4

We made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

There are times when chaos reigns in our lives because others are not willing or able to fulfill the role they should play. When this happens we may suffer from the lack of leadership and protection.

The time of the judges was a time of confusion for Israel. Each person did what was right in his own eyes instead of obeying the law. They were oppressed by tyrants, one of whom was General Sisera, who "ruthlessly oppressed the Israelites for twenty years" (Judges 4:3). At this time God chose Deborah to be a judge. Her job was to decide the disputes of the people.

One day Deborah summoned a man named Barak and told him that God would use him to defeat the army of Sisera. "Barak told her, 'I will go, but only if you go with me'_" (Judges 4:8). So, Deborah agreed to go along, but she said, "You will receive no honor in this venture, for the LORD's victory over Sisera will be at the hands of a woman." (4:9). Barak lacked the faith to take on the responsibilities God had chosen him for. In the end, General Sisera did die at the hands of a woman. In the victory song, Deborah was honored. They sang, "There were few people left in the villages of Israel-until Deborah arose as a mother for Israel" (5:7).

When others don't fulfill their rightful duty and role, we have the option of finding a way to cope, with God's help. Deborah compensated for Barak's lack of faith. We don't have to endure the ongoing effects of other people's limitations. And we don't have to accept the painful circumstances that their weaknesses create.

Staying in daily contact with God will help eliminate some of the painful circumstances we might otherwise create.