Last weekend, with joy and a few tears, we celebrated my oldest son’s sixteenth birthday.
For Aidan, as for any American teenager, this birthday is a milestone because he’ll receive his driver’s license this year. And he’s earned it. He’s got a lot of common sense and good driving instincts, and he’s logged many hours of driving in both the city and the country.
But for Aidan, turning sixteen was especially worth celebrating because of the transformation he’s made in his life this year. Perhaps most impactful was his decision (as YouTuber Amy Landino says) to “just do the thing.”
You see, Aidan is a more laid-back sort who, for most of his life, has relied on his dad and I to direct his steps. He has always been tender-hearted and obedient, yet not proactive.
But within the past six months, he has decided to wake early, work out, listen to sermons, read more, study harder, and start a business building and selling gaming computers.
His dad and I are so grateful to see a foreshadowing of the responsible man he will become!
Aidan’s recent growth reminds me of the Bible story of Gideon, famously reluctant to believe that God had chosen him for the mission of defeating the Midianites.
Judges 6 – 7 tells of Gideon’s quest for stronger faith and the defeat of Israel’s enemies. How tenderly God led Gideon along, never scolding as Gideon requested sign after sign that he was the right man for the mission.
And Gideon said unto God, Let not thine anger be hot against me, and I will speak but this once: let me prove, I pray thee, but this once with the fleece; let it now be dry only upon the fleece, and upon all the ground let there be dew. – Judges 6:39
Of course, it wasn’t just “this once” that Gideon asked for a sign. But God led Gideon along slowly, increasing his faith in baby steps rather than giant leaps.
And in the end, the gentle, fearful, humble Gideon ended up defeating thousands of Midianites with just three hundred men, armed only with trumpets, torches and pitchers – no swords needed. With God on his side, Gideon was finally able to take a leap of faith and just do the thing.
What do you consider to be the thing God intends for you to do? Is something holding you back?