Judges chapters 4 & 5
She understood her spiritual calling. She was a prophetess – it was her God-ordained purpose. It was the totality of who she was. Therefore, when she spoke, it was with authority.
This had nothing to do with her being a male or female. It had to do with a need God had to expose His heart and His plans to His people. This was a need that God knew Deborah would be able to fulfil.
Deborah also understood her call in the natural as a woman, as a wife. The Bible clearly adds the tile of “wife of Lappidoth” to her list of credits, which means it was significant to God.
Lappidoth means “to shine forth”, which speaks of the fact that her husband had a renowned reputation of his own. Yet he was secure enough to release Deborah to be the great leader that she was. The way she handled the situation with Barak tells us about what went on in her home and the way she interacted with her husband. The text clearly indicates that she was submitted as a wife to her husband and she was blessed because of it. Everyone knew that because her house was in order, they could respect her and follow her.
The people would never have willingly followed Deborah if she were out of line. She was a wife first before she was a judge, a woman before she was a leader. She was under submission first to God and then to her husband.
Some Christian women are confused over this and they wonder why their husbands want nothing to do with God or the church. Do you know why?
Firstly, no man will ever embrace something with which he feels he is in competition. If you are making the man in your life feel that he has to compete with Jesus or your pastor, you need to repent about this right away. The presence of God in your life should make you a better wife to that man. Stop treating the pastor better than you treat your husband. Whether your husband is saved or unsaved, God still holds you responsible and accountable to serve, love and submit to that man (abusive situations are excluded).
Secondly, no man is going to frequent a place in which he feels all the women are in charge. Men are fixers by nature; if there is nothing for them to fix, they move on in search of unconquered territory.
As for those of you who feel stifled and hindered from ministry because of your mate, take heed. God is never going to put your ministry before your care for your husband. That is unscriptural. It would be going against His own Word, and He is not going to do that. Don’t forget that serving your husband is also being obedient to God. Your man is won to God by your behaviour. You are the only example your mate receives of how to submit to God. The way we submit to visible leadership is a good indicator of how we will heed invisible authority.
Thirdly, Deborah understood her positional calling as a servant of God. This is the master hint on how to maintain your femininity in the boardroom or whatever environment makes you feel as if you need to wage a war for equal rights or just humane consideration.
Deborah did her job because God said so. It wasn’t about the men around her. It was about a Kingdom call, not her own personal agenda.
EPH 6: 7, 8 Rendering service readily with goodwill, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that for whatever good anyone does, he will receive his reward from the Lord, whether he is slave or free.
Stop looking at the natural man at your job. Your identity is hidden somewhere higher than the plaque on your door or your company job description. God has ordained you to operate on three levels: In the spirit, as a woman and as His servant.
Your goal should be to fulfil His call on your life and not what you can get out of doing what you do. You can spend all your energy trying to grasp your desires in your human efforts and live a life of frustration – overworked and under appreciated or worse; losing all you’ve laboured for in a blink of an eye. As you get over the praise of men, God will reward you richly for developing a servant’s heart.
Dear Heavenly Father, I receive forgiveness for my misplaced priorities. I receive forgiveness for not celebrating the woman You created me to be. I receive forgiveness for buying into the lie of the world that I am inferior, a voice to be ignored, an empty vessel without honour. I now embrace the truth that I am fearfully and wonderfully made, that I am a marvellous work, that my femininity is a treasure hidden in this earthly vessel.
I rejoice in the gifts You have given me, gifts of influence and wisdom. I stir up the gifts You’ve placed within me and I decree that I am a wise steward of all that You have deposited in my spirit. As I strip off all preconceived ideas and worldly labels, I rest in the assurance of Your salvation, Your authority, Your validation of all that I am in You. I gladly receive instruction to be the woman whom You have fashioned me to be. I receive guidance in the way that You would have me take, to the praise and honour of Your glory. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN.
Credits – Amanda Buys
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