Be an Example

Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.

Judges 7:17-18 (NIV)
“Watch me,” he told them. “Follow my lead. When I get to the edge of the camp, do exactly as I do. When I and all who are with me blow our trumpets, then from all around the camp blow yours and shout, ‘For the Lord and for Gideon.’”

Judges 7:17-18 (MSG)
“Watch me and do what I do. When I get to the edge of the camp, do exactly what I do. When I and those with me blow the trumpets, you also, all around the camp, blow your trumpets and shout, ‘For God and for Gideon!’”
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“And he said to them, “Look at me, then do likewise. When I come to the edge of the camp, do just as I do. When I and all who are with me blow the trumpet (ram’s horn), then all around the camp you also blow the trumpets and shout, ‘For the Lord and for Gideon!’” -AMPLIFIED

We have been following Gideon pretty closely lately. We have discussed his calling, his testing, his small steps of faith, his low points and even God giving him signs of encouragement. Today I want to focus on his example to his men.

In today’s world we would call Gideon’s example, mentorship. A mentor is a teacher, adviser, instructor or guide; that is wise, trusted and supportive. This person would lead by example.

Now, mind you, Gideon needed a whole lot of encouragement from God to get to the place where he could be a mentor in this instance, but he was finally able to be a mentor. He had a crash course in mentorship very quickly from God.

Gideon’s words to his men were these, “Watch me. Do what I do. When we come to the outskirts of their camp, do what you see me doing.” -(VOICE) A mentor is someone that you can watch and follow their lead. Do what they do. In order for this to work though, the leader must BE a good example. In this case, Gideon needed to be doing what God had called him to do. If he was not doing what God had called him to do there would have been certain failure. He would have been leading his men to certain destruction. (By obediently following God’s instructions Gideon had faith that they would come through this experience victorious.)

Woven throughout Scripture is the communiqué and message that children of God must be an example; in both Old Testament and New. A few verses that stress this fact follow:

* “You are like that illuminating light. Let your light shine everywhere you go, that you may illumine creation, so men and women everywhere may see your good actions, may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me, and may turn and praise your Father in heaven because of it.” -Matthew 5:16 (VOICE)

* “In the same way that iron sharpens iron, a person sharpens the character of his friend.” -Proverbs 27:17 (VOICE)

* “Don’t let anyone belittle you because you are young. Instead, show the faithful, young and old, an example of how to live: set the standard for how to talk, act, love, and be faithful and pure.” -1 Timothy 4:12 (VOICE)

* “The wise will hear and increase their learning, and the person of understanding will acquire wise counsel and the skill [to steer his course wisely and lead others to the truth].” -Proverbs 1:5 (AMP)

* “Likewise, you younger men [of lesser rank and experience], be subject to your elders [seek their counsel]; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another [tie on the servant’s apron], for God is opposed to the proud [the disdainful, the presumptuous, and He defeats them], but He gives grace to the humble.” -1 Peter 5:5 (AMP)

* “Give instruction to a wise man and he will become even wiser; teach a righteous man and he will increase his learning.” -Proverbs 9:9(AMP)

Mentoring, with God’s help, is basically helping others to reach their full potential; helping them to be all that they can be. In order for them to do that though, they need to see that it is possible by the mentor’s example. The Apostle Paul wrote these very revealing words to the Corinthian church, “Imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.” -1 Corinthians 11:1(AMP) That is how we can be a good example and a great mentor; imitate Christ. We must follow Jesus’ example!

If you are a child of the Most High God; then you have been called to be a light, example, imitator, and a mentor. Just by the title of “Christian” we should realize that we are to be like Christ; imitators of Him. So, the question we really need to ask ourselves is, are we truly being an example and mentor to others in order to help them reach their full potential in God? Think about it!

My Prayer:
Lord, there have been times when I have not been the best example to follow. Forgive me please. I want to be a help to others walk with you; not a hindrance. God forbid that I would ever cause another to stumble and fall away from you because I have set a bad example. Please, help me to remember whose I am and set a good, godly example for others. Be Christ in me; my hope of glory!

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