Have you ever thought that God sees you differently than anyone else? Have you ever thought that God sees you differently than maybe you even see yourself. The Bible tells us that "The eyes of the LORD search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him." (2 Chronicles 16:9). God's eyes are searching ... not for the most talented, most popular, best dressed, etc. His eyes are searching for people whose hearts and motives are fully committed to Him. It's those people that He promises to strengthen and support.
We wrapped up our "Yes You Can" series at axis this past Wednesday night with the main thought of God uses the least likely. All throughout the Bible, God has a history of choosing the least likely, the least popular, the ones with "issues," the ones who don't have it all together. God specializes in choosing the least likely. To illustrate that we looked at the story of Gideon in Judges 6 - 7. It's a powerful story of God choosing the least likely person to do something powerful. God chose a man to lead a battle ... a man who, when first introduced in the story, is hiding and fearing for his life. He's a man who describes himself as "the least in my family." Throughout the story, Gideon struggled with self-doubt. But, God said, "Am I not sending you? ... I will be with you." We used the thought again that those 5 words are life changing. "I will be with you" is greater than any of our fears and any of our excuses.
The reason God uses the least likely is so that "no one may boast before Him." (1 Corinthians 1:27 - 29). It's the idea that God often uses the least likely so that when the "wow" stuff happens, we can't take credit for it ... all the credit goes to God! Even in the story of Gideon, when his troops were outnumbers 4 to 1, Gideon goes to God for help. But, instead of getting more troops, God actually takes away soldiers and leaves him with only 300 men. The odds are now 450 to 1 ... but when the battle is over, Israel is victorious and all the credit goes to God.
Our kids were challenged to never make the mistake of asking God to use them so that THEY look good. The ultimate end in doing the good things we're called to do is so that our "light will shine in front of people. Then they will see the good that we do and praise our Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16). How awesome would it be to see God use us, but instead of people saying "Wow, you're amazing." they say "Wow! God is amazing!" That's the goal.
We finished the night by casting some vision for the fall and letting our kids know that they will be challenged to do some specific things that will make a difference. The initial thought they may have is "I don't think I can do that." But, I reminded them that God says "I am with you." That's where our confidence and courage comes from. It was a great way to end the night and our students left fired up about some of the things coming up for us this fall.
Check out some of the fun pictures from our night below ... some "Feats of Strength" and testimonies of what God is doing in lives.